Getting original filenames back in Lightroom Classic

In the process of extricating myself from Capture One, I imported a bunch of folders of photos into Lightroom Classic that had already been renamed to yyyymmdd-[original camera filename].[extension] by Capture One. Only after I re-applied some edits in Lightroom did I realize that my regular Lightroom import process had done another rename to those, so now they looked like yyyymmdd-yyyymmdd-[original camera filename].[extension]. Not a big deal, but it bugged me to see the date twice. And you can’t batch-rename those files in the Finder because Lightroom will get confused.

I saw that one of the metadata fields in Lightroom is called Original Filename”, which is the filename Lightroom saw before it renamed anything during import. You can get those original filenames back by doing this:

  1. Select all the photos in the folder
  2. Go to Library > Rename Photos…
  3. Click the File Naming” dropdown and select Edit…”
  4. Clear out whatever is in the expression box
  5. Click the second dropdown under Image Name” and select Original filename”, then click Insert
  6. In the Example above the box, you should see your original filename
  7. Click Done
  8. Click OK
  9. Confirm that your images are all renamed correctly in Lightroom
  10. You can even look at the image filenames in the Finder to feel extra sure that they’re all correct now

March 20, 2024