We are standardizing some sourcetype names and had the idea to provide a "compatibility" app in which users could run searches on the old sourcetypes if needed. To implement this we setup a rename stanza for our sourcetype in the props.conf file for our compatibility app as suggested in this thread http://answers.splunk.com/questions/4940/sourcetype-aliasing.
It seems that even though the rename is specified within an app it is applied globally. Searches run in the default search app (or other apps we have created) require the use of the renamed sourcetype.
The hope is that searches in all other apps could be performed on sourcetype=new_sourcetype_name but users could search for sourcetype=old_sourcetype_name via the compatibility app.
I think you could further refine this so that you are only blocking the sourcetype rename by changing
[props/new_sourcetype_name/rename], just FYI. This would be helpful if you need other
props.conf settings but simply wanted to block the rename itself.