My images are broken

This is the most obvious issue you could encounter when using a plugin that renames/alters your files. Well, you should have made a backup before so restore broken. If you don’t understand how technically they could get broken, the answer is in the section below “Update of the links”. If have no backup, then there are two things you can do:

  • Un-rename those files (= undo). There is a Undo option in the Advanced Settings of the plugin. Enable it and visit your Media Library. In the Rename column, you will notice a red arrow to come back, to undo. Use it.
  • Install the Regenerate Thumbnails plugin and run it on those images (or all your images)

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.

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 > Settings > 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 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.
How do I get rid of the banner?
You can add this line to your wp-config.php (main config file) or in your functions.php (theme).
`define( “WP_HIDE_DONATION_BUTTONS”,  true );`

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;

Update of the links (references)

There are many themes and plugins available. Some of them use images, created their own meta hidden somewhere in your database or at some uncanny locations. Unfortunately, Media File Renamer cannot guess all those. If you rename a file, one of those references might get broken.

If you know how to update the references, you can use the “mfrh_url_renamed” (if you want to handle the new URL for this filename) or the “mfrh_media_renamed” (if you want to handle the filename on your server).

For instance, here is the code to update the post meta. This is actually already part of the plugin.

add_action( 'mfrh_url_renamed', 'action_update_postmeta', 10, 3 );
function action_update_postmeta( $post, $orig_image_url, $new_image_url ) {
  global $wpdb;
  $query = $wpdb->prepare( "UPDATE $wpdb->postmeta SET meta_value = '%s' WHERE meta_key <> '_original_filename' AND (TRIM(meta_value) = '%s' OR TRIM(meta_value) = '%s');", $new_image_url, $orig_image_url, str_replace( ' ', '%20', $orig_image_url ) );
  $wpdb->query( $query );
  • Kurt Scherer


    Downloaded the File Renamer plug-in and activated it it. Opened my Media files and it was there. Next time days later it was gone. I deleted the original download and reloaded it from the WP plug-in directory, then activated it but it’s still not showing up anywhere. Any idea of what is happening? I had just paid for the Pro-version before noticing it wasn’t there anymore.

    • So it’s active but not showing anywhere? Do you see the menu “Meow Apps” at the bottom of your menu in the WordPress Admin? Do you see the File Renamer there and its options? Also, in the Media Library, the renaming buttons are displayed in a column, maybe it has been made hidden? You can click on Screen Options (top of the screen in the Media Library) and make sure it’s checked.

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