Wrong filenames

I have a folder with around 40,000 jpg images, family photos etc. I spend my spare time renaming the images, so for instance an original photo named P01234567 might become P01234567-andy-les-jane, thus showing the names of people actually in the photo. This is great since I can then search easily for anyone in any photo.

(Okay I know there is photo tagging but my system, which is more than just the above bit is much better than simple tagging. But I am not posting to discuss tagging...)

What is freaking me out is that some files end up with the wrong names. The names they end up with are the names I give to other files. Usually it is the first two or so names in a folder so affected. It is as if the file names are swapped over, perhaps. But this is so random it is very difficult for me to track what is happening.

Initially I thought perhaps it was just me, perhaps some finger trouble. But as time goes by I am finding more and more instances of the problem.

I have scoured the web for answers from people with similar problems but found very little if nothing. (And anyway Google stupidly prefers to give me answers about how to bulk rename files.)

That's about it, except it might be useful to explain my setup..
Main and newest laptop runs Windows 8, x64 1tb drive. I have two other laptops, Win7, x64 500mb drive and WinVista with 2x 250mb drives. These are all kept in sync over my wifi via AllwaySync running from my main computer.

I have run chkdsk on each computer to death and even some other tools in case of disk errors.

Any advice appreciated...



Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Premium Supporter
File sync can be changing the names if that folder (with the photo storage) is one of the files being synced.

I recommend:

1. Un-sync the photo folder,

2. Split the main folder into smaller ones with whatever naming you like eg, cars, school, kids etc

You already know about tagging (and more power too you) but I'd still suggest Lightroom to help you organize… it's non invasive and designed for large collections.

Windows has a limit on the amount of file space any folder can store and it is a major risk having so many photos all together in the same place.

Jpg images aren't the best stock because every time you edit them a little bit of quality is lost

The pictures are already divided into several 100 , if not 1000 folders, so that's not the problem. I understand the loss of quality of jpg editing. Most family photos do not require any editing so the usability of jpg outstrips that problem by a long way.

Nevertheless I'll take a loook at lightroom, but do not see how that helps at all.


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

I hope you have all those photos backed up on an external drive?
I always worry when someone has that many valued files on their computer.


That's why I use AllwaySync, as a way of backing up- which is worrying! 99% are just fine, so why 1% end up with wrong names is beyond me.


Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Premium Supporter
That's why I use AllwaySync, as a way of backing up- which is worrying!
When you snyc a folder it makes a link between the two so if folder 1 plus folder 2 are synced and a photo in folder 1 gets removed (i.e. virus, file corruption or accidental delete) then the corresponding photo in folder 2 will also disappear. It’s your computer and by all means, use that software if you like it but understand that when the shit hits the fan… you don’t have a backup.

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