iPhone Video Rename by Date/Time EXIF Values | Cheatsheet

I always like to copy the video’s off my iPhone onto my PC and then resync them back to the phone (selecting only the ones I want) unfortunately this process isn’t always straight forward when you also want to rename them using their EXIF date & time values. As you may already know EXIF date works great with JPGs but there doesn’t seem to be so much of a “standard” when it comes to EXIF data for videos. The resync back to iPhone sometimes causes the incorrect date/time stamp in the Camera Roll. This really bothers me during iMovie creations because I like to reference (and know by the title) when the clip was created. Fortunately when the iPhone camera creates video files it also injects EXIF data (When using the native App). This is a great reference when you want to date/time rename the files but can be confusing when video files contain over 20 EXIF values all specifically related to date/time.

The main EXIF value I always reference is “CreateDate” this is the original date/time when the file was created and is set by the iPhone injecting the EXIF “[QuickTime]” tag. All other values I ignore, this is the “sacred” golden value that fixes things (in a quest to rid the world of incorrect dates listed on videos). The other important value to note is “FileCreateDate” which is a EXIF “[File:System]” tag, this can sometimes be different to the “CreateDate” but is important because this is what the iPhone Camera Roll references and how the videos are organised. As I’ve experienced the FileCreateDate value can sometimes be different to the CreateDate therefore showing incorrect date/time date in iOS.

Basically with all this background information above, I’m going to cut to the chase and list a load of EXIFTool commands to help rename videos based on creation date and ensure that when you sync them back to your iPhone they display in the correct order within “CameraRoll”

The EXIFTOOL is great but can be open to how you code your lines so don’t be surprised if you find a different string on another website else where. The lines below are how I do it…

Shows all EXIF info | Lists all data values

exiftool -s -G "M:\Share"

Show date/time | Lists all Date/Time “File:System” only values (What Windows OS sees)

exiftool -AllDates -a "M:\Share"

Show date/time | Lists all Date/Time “EXIF” values

exiftool -time:all -a -G0:1 -s "M:\Share" 

Modify Filename | Based on “CreateDate” – Only MOV/MP4 files – Sub-directories – Without modifying time-stamps

exiftool "-filename<CreateDate" -d %Y-%m-%d_%H-%M-%S%%-c.%%le -r -ext mp4 -ext mov "M:\Share"

Modify Filename | Based on “CreateDate” – Only MOV/MP4 files – Sub-directories – Without modifying time-stamps – if “Apple”

exiftool "-filename<CreateDate" -if "$Make eq 'Apple'" -d %Y-%m-%d_%H-%M-%S_gmt_de_iP6%%-c.%%le -r -P -ext mp4 -ext mov "M:\Share"

Modify Filename | Based on “CreateDate” – Only JPG files – Sub-directories – Without modifying time-stamps

exiftool "-filename<CreateDate" -d %Y-%m-%d_%H-%M-%S_gmt_de%%-c.%%le -r -ext jpg "M:\Share"

Modify Date/Time | Only “File Create Date” (What Windows Uses)

exiftool "-FileCreateDate<CreateDate" "M:\Share"

Modify Date/Time | Only “File Access Date” (What Windows Uses)

exiftool "-FileAccessDate<CreateDate" "M:\Share"

Modify Date/Time | Only “File Modify Date” (What Windows Uses)

exiftool "-FileModifyDate<CreateDate" "M:\Share"

Modify Date/Time | All date/time values (But not What Windows Uses)

exiftool "-time:all<CreateDate" "M:\Share"

Delete all meta values – Only JPG files

exiftool -all= -ext jpg "M:\Share"

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