Wayne State College

Character Use for Filenames

We have lots of systems we use on campus to store files: The J:Drive, the G:Drive, OneDrive for Business, Canvas, and several others. Unfortunately, they all handle filename characters in slightly different ways and a filename that works on your J:Drive might give you problems with you try to upload it into OneDrive for Business.

We thought we'd provide you with a list of characters to avoid in filenames if you can. While some of these work in some systems, avoiding them in your filenames will help you avoid uploading/downloading challenges as you move files between systems.  

Don't Use

Tilde (~)

Number sign (#) 

Percent (%) 

Ampersand (&) 

Asterisk (*)

Braces ({ }) 

Backslash (\) 

Colon (:) 

Angle brackets (< >)

Question mark (?)

Slash (/) 

Pipe (|) 

Quotation mark (")  

Take Note

You shouldn't start or end a filename with a period (.) and don't use two consecutively within a filename.

If you begin a filename with an underscore (_), the file will be hidden on most systems


Last Updated: 9/13/2019