I have about 3K .pdf documents named to the following filename convention:


the next file in the sequence could be something like

BER_4039464-BER_9384762.pdf (the numbers are nonsequential).

What I need to do is preserve the first part of the filename BER_0020236, while removing the rest and preserving extension .pdf.

I thought I could use "rename" from the right-click options, select replace, and then input -******* with a blank replacement. This doesn't work - perhaps because finder isn't recognizing * as a wildcard? I can remove - easily, but not characters after -.

Is there an extant script somewhere that would do this, or is there something I'm missing from the finder option?

  • I should say in the meantime I found manytricks.com/namemangler which accomplished nicely - however, I'm still looking for an answer here if possible.
    – Gryph
    May 10, 2018 at 3:28
  • I wrote a python script to do something similar a while ago. It was a pretty easy build, but I don’t know where I saved it... (rather, I think I saved it on my desktop which is currently being transported cross-country)
    – NoahL
    May 10, 2018 at 4:10
  • Sorry to ask this, but can you please mark the question as answered? I want to put a bounty on a question I have and need the points. Thanks.
    – MBUST
    May 15, 2018 at 10:26

1 Answer 1


This should do the trick (just edit FolderTemp to something that works):

tell application "Finder"
    set FolderTemp to alias "Folder with all files"
    set allfiles to files of FolderTemp
    repeat with i from 1 to count of allfiles
        set CurrentFile to item i of allfiles
        set filename to name of item i of allfiles
        set x to offset of "-" in filename
        set y to offset of "." in filename
        set NewFileName to characters 1 thru (x - 1) of filename as string
        set Extension to characters y thru -1 of filename as string
        set NewFileName to NewFileName & Extension as string
        set name of CurrentFile to NewFileName
    end repeat
end tell

I hope it helps.

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