Monday, 25 July 2011

Renaming files with PowerShell

Problem: I had a directory full of PDF files that needed renaming. Specifically, I had to remove part of each file name.

Solution: Let’s try PowerShell!

PowerShell has been sitting on my machine for ages but for some reason I haven’t got around to using it. This seemed like a great opportunity to get my feet wet and – happily - this example turned out to be very straight forward. Firstly, I discovered that PowerShell was installed to C:\WINDOWS\system32\windowspowershell\v1.0 and I checked that the directory was in my Path system environment variable.

I launched Console2  - it’s so much more fun than using the standard Windows command prompt – and changed directory to the one holding the files I wanted to rename. I then ran powershell.exe which brought up the PowerShell command prompt and used the following PowerShell command to rename the files in the current directory:

get-childitem *.pdf | foreach{rename-item $_ $_.Name.Replace("text to replace", "")}




That was it. The files were renamed replacing “text to replace” with an empty string.