FAQ, Customization and Issues

If your images or links are broken, there is a special page only about this here: Updating References & Links.

General Issues & Questions

In the Media Edit, the ‘File name’ doesn’t change!
Yes, this is a WordPress issue. This “File name” doesn’t come from the real filename but from a database entry called GUID. This GUID should be unique and is only managed by WordPress. Before, the plugin used to modify this GUID accordingly but recently WordPress tries to prevent the plugins to do so. After some research, it appears that modifying this GUID is a very bad idea after all (please check this URL: http://pods.io/2013/07/17/dont-use-the-guid-field-ever-ever-ever/). In short, don’t think this “File name” as an actual filename, it is not. It is an identifier.

I added an option (check the plugin settings) if you really want to rename it but you actually shouldn’t.

My website has many posts/pages/products, and the plugin is too slow
Unfortunately, updating the references after a rename to make sure nothing is broken is a process that takes time. If you WordPress is huge, and your database not powerful enough (in term of speed), that can happen. In that case, the only way is to disable the Update References options. Of course, that will break the direct links to the images (using their URLs), but that will still work for all the good plugins and themes that include images by using their IDs. It’s not possible to make Media File Renamer better in that sense: the only way to handle huge/slow installs would be to make everything asynchronous. The renaming and the updates will be performed in the background, will take minutes or hours, will be hard to test and debug, and will make a huge mess if anything fail (and it’s very likely with such a process). So it’s better to keep things simple for now.
I would like my old images URLs to be redirected to the new URLs.
This is actually very tricky technically and Media File Renamer can’t go beyond its scope. But I can recommend you the excellent Redirection plugin 🙂 And to make your life easier, the Media File Renamer has a little feature. Visit Media > Renamer, and in the Before / After section click on Display Filename, and once done, on Export as CSV. You can use import this CSV file directly into the Redirection plugin.
The input box where to edit the filename is grayed out.
You need to have the Pro version activated. Also, in your settings (WP Admin > Meow apps > File Renamer), you need to have Manual Renaming enabled.
I have problem renaming filenames with accents.
Did you migrate your files from one server to another? This might have create an encoding issue between your files (DB and filepath has a different encoding). This user found a solution to this issue: https://wordpress.org/support/topic/did-everything-right-except-remove-accents-bought-pro-to-manually-override?replies=5.
What the option ‘Rename on save’ does?
Let’s say you modify the titles of your media while editing a post. The plugin cannot rename the files yet, because you are in the process of editing your post and the image links are in there. If that option is checked, when the post is actually saved (drafted, scheduled or published), then the images will be renamed and the links updated. If you don’t check this option, you would have to go to the Media Manager and click on the button “Rename Now” next to that image.
I would like to compare the original filenames with the new filenames, is there a way to do this?
There is currently no screen displaying this but you can execute this SQL query:

SELECT m.post_id as media, m.meta_value as previous_filename, m2.meta_value as current_path FROM wp_postmeta m JOIN wp_postmeta m2 on m2.post_id = m.post_id AND m2.meta_key = ‘_wp_attached_file’ WHERE m.meta_key = ‘_original_filename’

That will display on the left the original filename, and the new filename (actually the full path in your uploads directory) will be on the right.

I am using Woocommerce. After renaming, the featured image for my products are broken. What can I do?
You should try to re-generate all the thumbnails. Have a look a this thread: Media File Renamer + WooCommerce.

Custom Renaming

We are all using different languages and our websites have different topics. Therefore, there are unlimited ways of automatically renaming filenames. Media File Renamer does it simply depending on the title you gave you the media. If you want to customize it, the best way is to implement this customization. You will need to be a developer of to get one to do it for you, but this is not too hard. The code below, for instance, will add “renamed-” in front of the filename proposed by the plugin. The $old filename is still accessible, and there is a reference to the attachment through the $post variable.

add_filter( 'mfrh_new_filename', 'my_filter_filename', 10, 3 );
function my_filter_filename( $new, $old, $post ) {
  return "renamed-" . $new;

Another filter allows you to do specify rules at the character level (but you can also specify whole strings).

add_filter( 'mfrh_replace_rules', 'replace_s_by_z', 10, 1 );
function replace_s_by_z( $rules ) {
  $rules['s'] = 'z';
  return $rules;

If you think that’s too complicated to do this, you can hire a developer, or you can also ask me and hire me to do it.

I recommend you to use WPEngine or SiteGround. They are both excellent hosting services and work perfectly with all my plugins.