replace dots in filenames with dashes, using sed

for f in *; do fn=`echo $f | sed 's/\(.*\)\.\([^.]*\)$/\1\n\2/;s/\./-/g;s/\n/./g'`; mv $f $fn; done
This command can rename all files in a folder changing all the dots in the filename for dashes, but respecting the final dot for the extension.
Sample Output
Image.1.2.png --> Image-1-2.png

2012-09-29 02:10:00

1 Alternatives + Submit Alt

  • Example of zsh globbing and parameter expansion. (*.*)(.*) ... the pattern we want to act on, a period followed by a string and then period, we split the pattern into two sections which will become $1, the first part of the match, and $2, second {1//./_}$2 ... the parameter expansion for $1 with a string substitution, followed by the match $2, the second part of the pattern.

    zmv '(*.*)(.*)' '${1//./_}$2'
    khayyam · 2013-04-06 01:57:34 0

What Others Think

or (using zsh): zmv '(*.*)(.*)' '${1/./_}$2'
khayyam · 407 weeks and 3 days ago

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

You must be signed in to comment.

What's this? is the place to record those command-line gems that you return to again and again. That way others can gain from your CLI wisdom and you from theirs too. All commands can be commented on, discussed and voted up or down.

Share Your Commands

Stay in the loop…

Follow the Tweets.

Every new command is wrapped in a tweet and posted to Twitter. Following the stream is a great way of staying abreast of the latest commands. For the more discerning, there are Twitter accounts for commands that get a minimum of 3 and 10 votes - that way only the great commands get tweeted.


Subscribe to the feeds.

Use your favourite RSS aggregator to stay in touch with the latest commands. There are feeds mirroring the 3 Twitter streams as well as for virtually every other subset (users, tags, functions,…):

Subscribe to the feed for: