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Replace spaces in a filename with hyphens

Terminal - Replace spaces in a filename with hyphens
rename 's/ /-/g' *
2010-10-23 17:03:54
User: depesz
Functions: rename
Replace spaces in a filename with hyphens

As long as you have perl based rename. You can check:

=$ rename --help

Unknown option: help

Usage: rename [-v] [-n] [-f] perlexpr [filenames]

That's the good one.


There is 1 alternative - vote for the best!

Terminal - Alternatives
sed -i 's/ /-/g' *
for f in * ; do mv "$f" $( echo $f | tr ' ' '-' ) ; done

Know a better way?

If you can do better, submit your command here.

What others think

In case you get 'Artist - Song name' turned into 'Artist---Song-name' you need to compress the extra hyphens.

Comment by karol 292 weeks and 2 days ago


if you want to compress (it wasn't mention in original snippet), it's trivial with rename:

rename 's/[ -]+/-/g' *

Comment by depesz 292 weeks and 2 days ago

This is really minimalistic. I like it. Just for clarification though, do all distributions have the rename command? I think I might have read somewhere how only a few did.

Comment by RaymondCrandall 292 weeks and 2 days ago


on ubuntu it comes from perl package. I don't have any other distributions handy, so can't check them.

Comment by depesz 292 weeks and 2 days ago

There are two renames I know of: one is a perl thing, the other one is in util-linux-ng (I'm using Arch Linux) - man 1 rename - much simpler than the perl one.

Comment by karol 292 weeks and 2 days ago

Your point of view

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