I'm experienced with Windows, not so much with Mac. I find myself often renaming documents from within the Open and Save As dialog box windows. I hope the description below makes sense to explain what I mean.

If you look carefully you can see the picture below is of the Open dialog box of Microsft Word in Windows.

enter image description here

In the example above, assume I was going to open the document called The Leadership Factor, but before I did this I realized that the filename of the document above was wrong. So I can click on this document (see how its highlighted) and if I want I can now rename it so that it ends with '2017' instead of '2013'. After renaming it, I can then click on the document called The Leadership Factor to open it up.

Can I do the same thing in macOS?

2 Answers 2


Can I do the same thing in macOS?

Yes and No. Let me explain.


You can do the same thing from within the Open dialogue window of an application, however it is not done by clicking on the filename to highlight it. Instead, you need to right-click on the filename and select Rename. This then highlights it and you can rename it as you wish.

If my explanation isn't clear, please let me know and I'll upload a couple of screenshots.


Unfortunately, macOS does not allow you to rename a document from within the Save As dialogue window. This may actually be a bug because right-clicking on a filename does in fact give you the Rename option, it's just that it doesn't actually allow you to rename the document.

In fact, now that I'm thinking about this, I suggest you send in some feedback to Apple. When you do select Bug Report as your feedback type, and for feedback area select the Desktop/Finder/Filesystem option. I'll do the same, because you either shouldn't be able to select Rename from within the Save As dialogue window, or it should work since you can select it.

  • Monomeeth, file a Radar with Apple <bugreport.apple.com>. Either the Rename option should work or it should not be able to be selected (disabled or removed).
    – Ɱark Ƭ
    May 15, 2017 at 11:09
  • Haha, great minds think alike! :) I've just done that exact thing and added the steps I used to my answer.
    – Monomeeth
    May 15, 2017 at 11:10

Right-click or control-click on the file to rename it from the open dialog.

enter image description here

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