Selecting the Best Folder Naming Scheme

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Selecting the best folder naming scheme depends on several factors such as how large your photo collection is likely to grow, how often you take photographs, what sort of images are to be stored, what media files you have and so on.

Storing your images in a chronological sequence is the most popular naming scheme. It helps you to easily retrieve the photos even if you don't remember the exact date the photos were taken on.

Below are some suggestions which will help you to select or build an appropriate folder naming scheme:

Use folder names which contain the year, month and date that the photographs were taken. This allows you to sort the folders chronologically and you do not lose track of the dates if you subsequently relocate the folder.
Add a short event name to each folder name as a reminder. You can use any short phrase as the event name. For example “MyBirthday” would be a valid event name. This helps you to quickly locate a folder visually. RoboImport has a feature to allow you to easily group your photos into folders labeled with event names. To do this you append a %project token to the SubFolders template and then check the option below the SubFolders box to show project tokens. A window with a list of images and an edit field for entering a new project token value will be listed for each %project token entry.
If you shoot one event over several days you can add a suffix "Day1", "Day2", or a number. You could put the suffix directly after date and before event name. In this case the folders will be sorted chronologically. For example:




Of course if you keep the photos in folders using the "%yyyy%mm%dd %project" template a single root folder would soon contain too many subfolders. So, depending how often you take photographs, you could group the folders by year, month, or season:

For example:

1. If you take photographs very often, several sessions per week or more, you should use a month based template, for example:

"%yyyy\%B\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project"


2. If you take photos not very often, less than 5-10 sessions per month, you should use a season based template, for example:

"%yyyy\%season\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project"


3. If you take photos occasionally, for example 1-3 sessions per month , you should use a year based template, for example:

"%yyyy\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project"


Here are descriptions of the tokens used in the above examples.

%yyyy - year image was taken, represented by four digits

%season - the season the image was taken, ("Winter", "Spring", "Summer", or "Autumn")

%mm - a month represented by two digits (01..12)

%B - a full month name

%dd - the day the image was taken

%project - a project token used to identify folders by event


If you shoot photos in RAW format or in RAW+Jpeg mode you may choose to organize files by format. Use the %type token for this.

For example, adding the %type token to the end of the SubFolders template would allow you to send RAW files to a "RAW" folder, video files to a "VIDEO" folder and leave the JPEG files in a root folder.

Other possible folder classification schemes could include camera, author or image group ("Scans", "Photos", "For Prints", or "For Web")


Below are some examples of good folder naming schemes:


%group\%yyyy\%B\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project\%type


%group - Image Group ("Scans", "Photos", "For Prints", or "For Web")

%yyyy - year Image creation, as four digits

%B - full month name

%mm - month as two digits (01..12)

%dd - day of the month (01..31)

%project - event name

%type - image type ("RAW", "VIDEO" or "")



%smodel\%yyyy\%season\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project\%type


%smodel - short camera model name

%yyyy - year of image creation, as four digits

%season - season ("Winter", "Spring", "Summer", or "Autumn")

%mm - month as two digits (01..12)

%dd - day of the month (01..31)

%project - event name

%type - image type ("RAW", "VIDEO" or "")



%owner\%yyyy\%mm\[%yyyy-%mm-%dd] %project


%owner - camera owner's name

%yyyy - year of image creation, as four digits

%mm - month as two digits (01..12)

%dd - day of the month (01..31)

%project - event name