Updating a Windows timestamp

Let’s say you need to modify the timestamp, or last modified date, on a Windows file. In my case, I wanted to change the last modified date on a lot of PDF files, so that the last modified attribute would reflect the date the content was last modified (rather than the file).

The best and easiest way I’ve found to do this is via Cygwin:
touch -t 201109201145 *.pdf

When I searched for how to accomplish this, I found all sorts of sites advising me to download a $20 shareware application, or write a C# application to do it. Fortunately, in a *nix type environment, it’s a one-line command.

There are other ports of Unix/Linux/*nix commands for Windows, some of which may be more lightweight than Cygwin. (I rely on Cygwin quite a bit, so I have it installed on all my Windows machines.) I have not used any of the following, but here are links to some alternatives, in case you are interested: