M365: Naming Conventions for Files and Folders


This article describes the best naming practices for files and folders in OneDrive, Teams, or SharePoint.




File & Folder Naming Conventions

Descriptive file names are an important part of organizing, sharing, and keeping track of data files. Develop a naming convention based on elements that are important to the project.


File naming best practices

  • Files should be named consistently
  • File names should be short but descriptive (<25 characters)
  • Avoid special characters or spaces in a file name
  • Use capitals and underscores instead of periods or spaces or slashes
  • Use date format: YYYYMMDD
  • Include a version number
  • Write down the naming convention in data management plan
  • Do not exceed 260 characters for the total folder & file character count. C:\Users\Panda\My Documents\Dropbox\Creative Nonfiction\My Autobiography\Favorite Things\Favorite Foods\Bamboo\Family Recipes\Fresh Leaves.doc (142 characters)


Elements to consider using in a naming convention

  • Date of creation (putting the date in the front will facilitate computer-aided date sorting)
  • Short Description
  • Work
  • Location
  • Project name or number
  • Sample
  • Analysis
  • Version number


Need additional help?

For additional Training please visit the Teaching & Learning Technologies Training site

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Article ID: 3985
Tue 5/4/21 4:05 PM
Mon 12/19/22 12:37 PM
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