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How to Rename a File or Folder in Windows Vista

You may need to rename a file or folder in Windows Vista to better represent the contents of that file or folder. Or you may want to add a date, your initials, or some other kind of identifier to the file or folder's name. Regardless of what you change the item's name to or why, Windows Vista makes renaming files and folders easy.

  1. Right-click Start and choose Explore.

    Locate the item that you want to rename by using Windows Explorer.

  2. Right-click the item and choose Rename.


    The name is now available for editing. Type a new name, and then click anywhere outside the name to save the new name.

You can’t rename a file to have the same name as another file located in the same folder. To give a file the same name as another, cut it from its current location, paste it into another folder, and then follow the procedure in this answer. Or, open the file and save it to a new location with the same name, which creates a copy. Be careful, though: Two files with the same name can cause confusion when you search for files. If at all possible, use unique filenames.

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