Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Naming and Renaming Files
• Dot: The period ( . ) that separates the main part of the ﬁ lename from the ﬁ le extension
• File extension: Usually three or four characters that follow the dot in the ﬁ lename
The main part of a ﬁ lename can have up to 255 characters—this gives you plenty of
room to name your ﬁ le accurately enough so that you’ll know the contents of the ﬁ le just
by looking at the ﬁ lename. You can use spaces and certain punctuation symbols in your
ﬁ lenames. Like folder names, however, ﬁ lenames cannot contain the symbols \ / ? : * “
< > | because these characters have special meaning in Windows 7.
A ﬁ lename might display an extension —three or more characters following a dot—to
help you identify ﬁ les. For example, in the ﬁ lename Car Sales.docx, the extension docx
identiﬁ es the ﬁ le as one created by Microsoft Ofﬁ ce Word, a word-processing program.
You might also have a ﬁ le called Car Sales.jpg—the jpg extension identiﬁ es the ﬁ le as
one created in a graphics program, such as Paint. Though the main parts of these ﬁ
lenames are identical, their extensions distinguish them as different ﬁ les. You usually do
not need to add extensions to your ﬁ lenames because the program that you use to create
the ﬁ le adds the ﬁ le extension automatically. Also, although Windows 7 keeps track of
extensions, not all computers are set to display them.
Be sure to give your ﬁ les and folders meaningful names that help you remember their
purpose and contents. You can easily rename a ﬁ le or folder by using the Rename
command on the ﬁ le’s shortcut menu.
Guidelines for Naming Files
The following are a few suggestions for naming your files:
• Use common names: Avoid cryptic names that might make sense now, but could cause
confusion later, such as nonstandard abbreviations or imprecise names like Stuff2013.
• Don’t change the file extension: When renaming a file, don’t change the file extension.
If you do, Windows might not be able to find a program that can open it.
• Find a comfortable balance between too short and too long: Use filenames that are
long enough to be meaningful, but short enough to read easily on the screen.
Next, you’ll rename the Flyer ﬁ le to give it a more descriptive name.
To rename the Flyer file:
1. In the Tutorial folder window, double-click the Playground folder to open it.
2. Right-click the Flyer file, and then click Rename on the shortcut menu. The
filename is highlighted and a box appears around it.
3. Type Raffle Flyer , and then press the Enter key. The file now appears with the
Trouble? If you make a mistake while typing and you haven’t pressed the Enter
key yet, press the Backspace key until you delete the mistake, and then complete
Step 3. If you’ve already pressed the Enter key, repeat Steps 2 and 3 to rename
the file again.
Trouble? If your computer is set to display file extensions, a message might
appear asking if you are sure you want to change the file extension. Click the No
button, right-click the Flyer file, click Rename on the shortcut menu, type Raffle
Flyer , and then press the Enter key.