How to Split Large XML Files for WordPress [Quicktip] / WordPress

When you want to migrate your WordPress to a new host or host, you may have a hard time transferring your backup data, mostly existing content. You can have a large backup file but WordPress limits you to import backup files to only 2Mb in size.

There is no other way to complete the migration but for your backup files to be less than 2Mb in size it is almost impossible especially with already oversized files. What you can do though is split the file into smaller sized chunks.

In this tutorial, we will show you how to use two different methods.

Split XML files on Windows

If you are on Windows, you can use WXR File Splitter.

Now go to the WXR File Splitter page and download the program. No installation required, you can use it immediately on your computer.

Once opened, you will see the WXR file splitter window. Click the ‘Open WXR File’ button to import your large XML file, then click the ‘Split File’ button to start splitting your large XML file.

Once the file is split, you’ll see the results in an open window of the file location.

Split XML files on Mac

To split files on your Mac you need to use another and simpler script written in python called ‘mainSplit’.

Now go to the intro page and at the site’s web page download the script. Make sure to download the file in the extension (.py) and not (.txt).

Once downloaded, open the Terminal Console available from the Applications > Utilities folder on your Mac and enter the following line:

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Running the line will open a small window of ‘WordPress XML Splitter’. Click the ‘Browse File’ button to select the XML file you want to split and then select the folder where you want to save the file by clicking ‘Browse Dir’.

When ready, click the ‘Start’ button and processing will begin immediately.

To check the delimited files, go to the folder you selected earlier and you will see a collection of files no more than 2Mb in size each.


Both solutions on Mac and Windows are pretty much the same, even though you’re using different programs and scripts. The process is simple and fast, making your migration a breeze with WordPress. There are other ways to back up your WordPress files, but this manual XML file splitting approach doesn’t take much of your time.

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