A client of mine has been blogging for over five years, leaving her with an extensive set of archives. We needed to move her blog to a new host, so I tried exporting her archives, both as a MySQL database dump and as a WordPress XML file export. Unfortunately, the size of the files made them rather unwieldy. When I tried importing the database dump through phpMyAdmin, the page would time out before the export was complete. When I used the blog importing tool in WordPress, it would time out before it had parsed the entire file. When I tried opening the files in a standard text editor like Notepad or my preferred editor, eTextEditor, to break the files into smaller pieces, the software would crash or lock up because it couldn’t handle loading all of that information into its temporary memory.
After some Googling, I found a few tools that allowed me to break up the files into smaller pieces and easily import the information. If you find yourself in a similar situation, I hope you find them helpful.
WordPress Splitter is a Windows program written by Ian Cull, a Mini car enthusiast, who is also rather handy with Visual Basic 6. The WordPress Splitter allows you to take the XML file created with the WordPress export tool and break it into several smaller XML files. WordPress Splitter inserts all the appropriate header information at the beginning of each file. You can also specify how large you want the split files to be.
Updated 9/28/11 – There’s now a new version of WordPress Splitter with an easier-to-use interface.
Text File Cleaver
Text File Cleaver takes a sharp knife to your text files and cuts them into smaller files, each with the same number of rows that you can specify. Small and simple, it broke up the MySQL dump so I could open the files in my text editor and get a look at what was inside it.
It’s got a suggestive name, but Big Dump is a great script that allows you to overcome the timeout problems encountered when you try importing a “big dump” via phpMyAdmin. First, you upload your large MySQL file to your server, then you configure the correct settings in the Big Dump PHP script. Ta da! Just run the script and your database will be imported. Be sure to remove the script and the server dump from your server when you’re done.