Characters you can't use in file names

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Dane D., Jan 5, 2007.

  1. Dane D. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Location:
    ohio
    #1
    As the title suggests is there a list of characters you can't use when naming files and folders. I need to know specifically for PCs but also for OS X.
     
  2. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #2
    I've found "Mickey Mouse" to be problematic. ;)

    Essentially, if you want to ensure that your file will work on as many systems as possible, stick to alphanumeric characters and underscores. Even spaces can cause problems.

    Most OSs can handle most characters nowadays, but the list of names they can handle isn't exactly the same, and many people use older OSs. Also, some file-transfer protocols balk at "odd" characters.

    Are there specific characters (or a family of characters) that you're curious about?
     
  3. aricher macrumors 68020

    aricher

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2004
    Location:
    Chi-il
    #3
    I've had some of our older PC servers at my office reject file names with anything but alpha numerics with underscores for spaces. Any symbols (ie: @, %,#, etc) will screw up the server. This is a very old snap server that's being replaced soon. As far as the Mac end of things goes I haven't run across anything that you can't name a file - except for having the last space be a "." Even then the OS will as an underscore after the . automatically ._
     
  4. heehee macrumors 68020

    heehee

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2006
    Location:
    Same country as Santa Claus
    #4
    Like the above poster said, stick to lowercase alphanumeric characters and underscore, no spaces. I said lowercase because OSX reads upper and lower case as two different files.
     
  5. Dane D. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Location:
    ohio
    #5
    One of our clients received a couple of CDs with the following names for the folders:
    8" Shark Replacement and 10" Shark Replacement. When I put them in a PC and click on the folder a message pops up ".. a syntax error". I also noticed that in OS X (10.4.7), when I would try to open a file in CS2 Illustrator with '/' in the name it wouldn't open.
     

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