Friday, 8 July 2011

Staff Photos - Use Access to change file names

I've got a nice little Access Database which holds a table of staff members, and another linking the staff to a photo file location. I then use a query to find members of a specific department with a photo and make a tiled report i.e. a staff board with names and job titles.

I've recently been asked to make the staff photos available for everyone, but the problem is they would not want to use the database in its present state (it doesn't look too pretty) and all the photos are still sorted in the folders corresponding to the photo-shoot date and still have their original file name. The question has come up - Can I get Access to rename the photos to say the staff name?

Well, I've done a bit of research (a google search) and it looks like to use access I'd have to do a bit of programming!! But there is this ingenious solution. Basically:

  1. Export a excel file of staff name and picture file location
  2. open excel and format it so that you get each row to say "ren \Photoshoot1\DSC00342.jpg \ArtAndDesign\StephenBleach.jpg"
  3. Then you can make a *.BAT file with a whole list of these commands and "bobs your uncle" you have renamed all the files and it'll only have taken about 30 mins. 
You can even adapt it to put them in directories according to Department! Genius!

But, rather then doing all this, I'd rather the college had a better system (i.e. not me) of gathering and sorting staff photos using some centralised system which everyone can take advantage of.

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