How to batch rename multiple files in Windows [Tip]

Having trouble in renaming multiple files in Windows? Users all around the world face trouble when they have a whole lot of files to rename. No one likes the idea of spending hours renaming one file at a time, so how do we solve this issue?  Windows does offer a few options to rename multiple files in Windows, let’s check what they are.

Renaming Multiple Files in Windows Using Windows Explorer

File Explorer or Windows Explorer is a power tool that can do many tasks. Using Windows Explorer, we can rename multiple files in Windows. Say you are in a folder that contains 10 files you need to rename. The best and easiest option to rename is by selecting a file, then right clicking and selecting the option “Rename” giving an appropriate name and then pressing tab. It will move to the next file and automatically select the name of the file for you to rename. Continue this action till you rename each and every file.

Things can get a little easier if you wish to rename all the 10 files with similar/same name. For this, select all the files you need to rename, right click and enter a name and now press outside the highlighted area. All the files are renamed and have the same name. The only thing that differentiates the files is the number in the parentheses, for example: test (1).docx, test (2).docx, test (3).docx.

Rename Windows Multiple Files Using Command Prompt

Another option to rename multiple files in Windows is using the more powerful option called “Command Prompt.” For this, you can use the command “rename” or “ren.” Now go to the folder that contains the files you want to rename and from there go to File > “Open Command Prompt” and from there choose > “Open Command Prompt.”

Now, enter the command ren “current_filename.ext” “new_filename.ext” to rename files using Command Prompt. You can also rename the files and change their extension using the command prompt. For example: ren “current_ filename.ext” “new_ filename.html.”

Rename Multiple Files in Windows Using Powershell

Powershell offers more flexibility when renaming files using the command prompt. To rename multiple files in Windows using the Powershell, you need to first go to the folder that contains the files to be renamed. Now, from the file menu, open and then choose “Open Windows Powershell”.

Now to rename one file, you need to enter the command “rename-item “current_filename.ext” “new_filename.ext”.

But the real use of Powershell is when you want to rename a batch of files. For example, if you have files like wordfile (1).doc, wordfile (2).doc. Now, if you want to insert an “-“ and remove the space, it is easy.

“dir | rename-item -NewName {$ -replace ” “,”_”},” this command will do the work for you. Now, your files will look like wordfile_(1).doc, wordfile_(2).doc etc.

Third Party Apps

There are many third party apps that support bulk renaming. Bulk Rename Utility and Advanced Renamer can rename multiple files in Windows easily and are considered the best file renaming tools in the market.


You can easily batch rename multiple files in Windows using any of the above discussed methods and although it may seem tricky, it’s really not difficult if you pay attention to what you are doing, and you remember what name you used to rename the files.

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