I've renamed many files within the Elements Organizer (version 18), but today I'm stuck. Previously, I had just renamed files by replacing the value in the Name field under Information in the Organizer window. For some reason, this stopped working today. I finally closed the Organizer, reopened it, and tried again. It worked the first time, but not thereafter. So instead, I used the Rename item in the File menu to rename the file (I think that's what Adobe tells you to use anyway). This works, but only if the filename you want is 30 characters or less. In fact, if your current filename is longer than that, it shows up truncated in the Rename field. So "Spiky red flower in Baltimore Canyon_P1130632.jpg" shows up like this:
I've identified the flower (it's name is considerably longer than "Spiky red"), but cannot rename the file inside the Organizer, because it doesn’t come close to fitting in the Rename field. Is this a bug, or a feature (it’s hard to believe that this is intentional)? Or am I the only one seeing this behavior? Is there a workaround within the Organizer, or do I need to rename it outside the Organizer and then reconnect the file to the catalog?
File names are unique identifiers following naming rules set long ago depending on your operating system. For instance, they were limited to 8 digits length, followed by an extension of '.' plus 3 digits, such as ' File0123.jpg'.
Later, normal users wanted to make the file name significant; this again required making it longer than 8 digits... and now you want the identifier to be much more than 30 digits.
The way files are identified is absolutely defined by your OS version and by the different software allowed to access your files. A new OS version may support more than 30 digits, but not all softwares will understand this, especially older softwares.
From the beginning of IT, the good practice has been to separate file unique identification and file meaning. That means adding captions or notes as well as keywords as attributes to your files.
With captions or notes, you are not limited in length and the available search tools in Elements and other softwares allow fast and powerful searches. A long, meaningful caption allows multicreteria searches based on different words or parts of words, which is not available in a very long file name.
There is nothing wrong is wanting to rename a file into a significant single piece of text, but there must be limits. For instance, PSE offers different renaming schemes like other softwares, but that must be done from the available menus and tools of the organizer, not from the explorer or Finder, which explains why renaming from the info panel is not fully supported.
I don’t believe that answer is reasonable. Photoshop Elements, and the Elements Organizer, are not the only tools I use to work with my photos. Captions and notes in the Organizer are not accessible by other software; they are only helpful in presenting the photos through the Organizer, not in searching or organizing. The way I name my photo files identify them to me in a couple of different ways which are meaningful to me, but not to the Organizer. You’re essentially telling me that it’s okay for Adobe to set limits—apart from those of my operating system—on what I can name my files, and that 30 characters is a reasonable limit. Well, at the dawn of personal computing, 8 characters and a 3-digit extension were considered as reasonable lengths, so at least Elements hasn’t remained in those dark ages.
Until a few months ago, I never used the Organizer for naming or renaming files; I always used Windows File Manager. Then a couple of people on this forum pointed out how renaming or moving files outside of the Organizer messes up their catalog entries, and that I should always do so within the Organizer, for anything that is cataloged there. So that’s what I’ve tried to do. Until yesterday, it was working okay. And sometimes renaming the Name in the Information field still works; the fact that it works sometimes and doesn’t at others. That is “not fully supported:” it is a defect, which I will just have to work around.
It's not a good idea to go against best practices.
My previous post did not only explain the history of file naming, it stated clearly what is considered the best way to manage files in any computer system. That is to separate the identification and the meaning. The identification has to be unique (at least whithin a folder) and the meaning is stored in captions and keywords. Just note that since a vast majority of computer users has no problem at all managing meanings in captions (and also keywords), there is little chance that the limitation you are seeing in the 'rename' function will be investigated and solved.
Yes, there is a limitation in the input interface for file names, and there may be also limitations in the way you can input from the Info panel in certain circumstances. The catalog database totally supports longer file names.
Since the purpose of the file name is mainly to identify a file, I can't imagine entering such a long text, I would be unable to remember it after reading it...
Where you are wrong is to think it's best to have very long names than using captions and keywords to manage files across different softwares. It's exactly the contrary. No problem to share files it captions and keywords are 'written to files'. Real problems with different softwares you have not yet tried when using very long file names.
Really, use captions and just take the time to test the various search tools in the organizer.