11 Comments


  1. Most people I’ve seen are completely haphazard about file naming conventions in part because there’s no obvious good way to do it unless the user has tons of prior experience, and then it’s (almost?) too late… WordPress should provide users more guidance here in the form of renaming files based on a set of rules that can be configured by the users and also by developers.

    So I’d really like to see WordPress provide rules and add some workflow primitives that allow plugins to drive file renaming on upload based on attributes users could specify, such as the role of the file (headshot, site hero, featured image, etc.), main subject (“cake”, “handrail”, “sky”, “guitarist”, etc.) and some things users don’t control like named sizes (small, medium, large, tiny, huge, etc.)

    Yes this can be done with a plugin but it requires hacking core so much that the code is fragile and very likely to break on the next major upgrade (I know, I’ve written said code!) This level of control should be implemented by core and then allowed to be extended by plugins and themes.

    Minimally I’d like to see WordPress strip files sizes from uploaded files so you don’t get filenames like “myphoto-1024×640-300×200.jpg”; it should just be “myphoto-300×200.jpg”

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  2. Jay S

    Yes I agree this needs to be improved I always name images to do with content in the post. If you manage a site with events it is also good to name images with dates on them so that you can search a month or year. Also if you like to clear images that you won’t reuse due to them having dates on them writing something like “dated” also helps so you can mass clear every now and then easily.

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  3. I don’t disagree with the points you make, but I just wanted to point out that the purpose of the ALT tag is for accessibility. It should describe the actual content of the image so that your visitors who are using screen readers will know what the image is when the ALT text is read aloud to them. Here’s a page on W3.org about why accessibility is important: http://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/accessibility.php

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  4. Naming Convention? Honestly, the only thing I seem to still care about is that there aren’t any spaces in my file names. It makes me twitch inside when I see %20.

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  5. There is a plugin to rename media files – it manages all occurence of the name in database – and a very convenient other plugin that find the media files when you search for post title ! It can save you a lot of time.http://wordpress.org/plugins/media-library-search/
    Some plugins rename automatically uploaded files – with post slug, date and so on.

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  6. Jerome

    Naming conventions are one thing but the big issue here with large media libraries is the way WP manages folders. Month- and year-based folders was OK as long blogs were concerned. As WP is, by far, not only for blogs anymore this structure doesn’t make sense any longer and custom folder/subfolder naming should be possible in order to allow appropriate distribution of media content.

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    1. This is a really good point, Jerome. And it was discussed over years and nothing has been done. WordPress has become real CMS and is not only blog paltform so it should handle large galleries properly by default. It is essential to give user flexible possibility to create own folder-based structure for media library which is tracked by database (Now only year/month structure is available).

      What is more, I have not found any (!) reliable plugin which could fix this problem. Funny thing, all wordpress sites are easy recognizeable by image paths like: ‘wptavern.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/example-photo.jpg’.

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  7. i wish i could enforce such a policy I’m lucky if i can get everyone to use full sized images and not upload bmps.

    :/

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  8. Pablo Cruz

    I totally agree with Jerome about the current folder-naming convention. Months and years are no longer sustainable, but I’m not sure about folder-subfolder approach. What about adding the ability to tag media so that way they get categorized?

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  9. Pete

    I name mine for SEO, that is, the main keywords. I copy and paste the image title into the alt text… works great

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