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Splitting WordPress XML files

I have moved my website from being hand coded in html to WordPress. Primarily my intention is to encourage myself to write and post more frequently without the barrier of fiddling around with html code each time – from experience I know that WordPress is easy and quick to use.

However, with any website platform change there are always some technical hurdles, so I’m going to note these as I encounter them, if only as a reference for myself in the future.

WordPress XML file too big to import

My first hiccup was that my WordPress Admin panel refused to import the xml file exported from my previous blog because it is too big (5MB). After some digging around I discovered that the likely reason is that I’m using budget web hosting and often the hosting company puts limits on the import file size to avoid excessive resource demands on their servers.

There are a few ways to address this issue, but one of the simplest is to chop the xml file into smaller bits so it can be imported in multiple steps. I chose to go this route because it made sense to my brain and I found a little app to do the cutting up of the file for me. This is useful because the file header and footer have to be included with each bit of the chopped up original file so that the importer knows what to do with the file.

The app that worked for me is WXR Splitter, suitable for Mac OS and a free download from Suhas Tech. All I had to do was download the app, enter the maximum file size I wanted it to generate (in my case 2MB) and then tell it where the original (big) xml file was. It worked like a charm despite being quite old (2012) and I am just hopeful the developer is honest and didn’t include malware! So far my computer is still behaving fine.

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