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Gnome-screenshot 3.1.2 uses filenames like this one

Screenshot at 2011-07-31 12:13:04.png

making it rather easy to see when it was taken.

The problem is that it uses the colon ( : ) character - making it impossible to access such an image from Windows.

Considering I take most of my screenshots so I can send them to Windows users this has caused some problems.

Is there any way to change the default name that is used by the screenshot tool to replace the ":" with "." or "," ?

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4 Answers 4

There is a simple and dirty way to rename all the screenshot taken immediately after the creation, but you will need to install inotify-tools ( apt-get install inotify-tools ) and then you could run this command:

while true; do inotifywait -e CREATE ~/Pictures && rename 's/\:/\./g' Pictures/Screenshot*.png; done;

While this command will run, everytime you save a new screenshot in Desktop/, the script will rename every file containing :, substituting : with .

(Maybe you want change the directory, I don't know wich directory use Gnome 3) If you really like it, you can start this command in a script every time gnome starts.

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+1 This is a neat little trick, but your regex should be 's/\:/\./g' –  mehaase Jul 16 '12 at 19:46
another option of replacement: use the unicode character –  LiuYan 刘研 Feb 16 '13 at 10:35
Note that screenshots are saved by default in ~/Pictures, not ~/Desktop. –  MestreLion Apr 4 '13 at 3:44

It is not actually possible change it easily, maybe you can help with this bug report.

(for the curious, check the source code. Currently, relevant line is 134)

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+1 for linking to source code. Now THAT is the linux way. (Although the file name code is actually here, now: git.gnome.org/browse/gnome-utils/tree/gnome-screenshot/…) –  mehaase Jul 16 '12 at 19:35
Unfortunately, the link is dead: No repositories found –  gertvdijk Feb 4 '13 at 16:37
New URL: git.gnome.org/browse/gnome-screenshot/tree/src/… (retrieved at 2013-02-16 18:08 UTC+0800) –  LiuYan 刘研 Feb 16 '13 at 10:08
I wish we could tweak this locally before good old GNOME developers wake up a little quicker to such important problems reported by users ;-) –  Sadi Jan 18 '14 at 13:49

Instead of installing additional software and writing this code in the screenshot tool, here's a workaround to rename the files afterwards.

All you need to do is to navigate to the directory and run the following command

rename 's/\:/\-/g' *.png

This will replace all colons with dashes in all file names ending in .png of the ones present in the current directory.

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Less optimal, but much easier workaround than proposed by fain182. +1 –  gertvdijk Feb 4 '13 at 16:36

Shutter is another application for taking screenshots which allows you to customize the file name: you can install it from Ubuntu Software Center.

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Shutter is amazing by itself, and this is imho this is the best approach: instead of fixing bad filenames, do not produce them! –  MestreLion Apr 4 '13 at 3:21

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