How can I strip out some text from filenames in a folder?

I'm currently attempting:

rename s/"NEWER_(.*?)"//g *

But nothing it getting renamed

I have a parent folder, with a bunch of sub-folders, within are files, that OneDrive thought would be a great idea to append a " (NEWER_timestamp)" to, and I'd like to remove that.

Example File Names:

getyou.ico (NEWER_1417529079.87)
o7pm.ico (NEWER_1417529184.89)
o7th.ico (NEWER_1417529135.81)
  • 2
    Can you post an example filename?
    – muru
    Dec 15, 2014 at 20:42
  • sure. updated question with some
    – Kevin
    Dec 15, 2014 at 20:44

2 Answers 2


Try the following:

find /path/to/parrent-dir -type f -exec rename -n 's:[^/]*(.*) .*$:$1:' {} +

./o7th.ico (NEWER_1417529135.81)                                 renamed as /o7th.ico
./sub-dir (NEWER_1417529135.81)/getyou.ico (NEWER_1417529079.87) renamed as /sub-dir (NEWER_1417529135.81)/getyou.ico
./sub-dir (NEWER_1417529135.81)/o7pm.ico (NEWER_1417529184.89)   renamed as /sub-dir (NEWER_1417529135.81)/o7pm.ico
./getyou.ico (NEWER_1417529079.87)                               renamed as /getyou.ico
./o7pm.ico (NEWER_1417529184.89)                                 renamed as /o7pm.ico
  • All [^/]*(.*) .*$ matches only the last part of the path that doesn't contain a /. And
  • In above regex, (.*) is a group of matching everything after last / and before a space. Its back-reference will be $1.
  • .*$ matches everything to end$ of files name after space.
  • Finally in replacement part of rename s/.../REPLACEMENT/, we just kept the matched group that is between last \ and a space(.*) which is known as group of matches.

You should consider using the quotes outside the regex (within, they are taken literally as quotes), and escape (. Try;

rename -n 's/ \(NEWER_\d{10}.\d{2}\)$//' *NEWER*

The precision of the expression might not be necessary, but you can't be too cautious when modifying files.

  • all this is doing is hanging with reading filenames from STDIN I am already inside the Parent folder where all these files are
    – Kevin
    Dec 15, 2014 at 20:59
  • @Kevin "If no filenames are given on the command line, filenames will be read via standard input." And since the shell leaves *NEWER* as it is if no expansions are found, you must have made a mistake, or are using a shell which replaced an unmatched wildcard with nothing.
    – muru
    Dec 15, 2014 at 21:05
  • copied and pasted, into Ubuntu 14.10 shell
    – Kevin
    Dec 15, 2014 at 21:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.