Tools

Export

You can use the Export tools to move your content to another WordPress.com site or to a self-hosted WordPress site. When you use the Export feature, your site’s content is downloaded into an XML file. This XML file includes your posts, pages, comments, categories, and tags.

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Exporting Your Content

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Before exporting your content, clean things up as much as possible. Review and delete any comments marked as spam. If there are pending comments that need review, approve or delete them as needed so that the export file is as small as possible.

Sidebar menu with the Tools section expanded and the Export item highlighted
Tools → Export

Go to Tools → Export to select the site content you want to export.

To create an export file with all of your site’s content (posts, pages, comments, custom fields, categories, tags, and media links) select the Export All button. To export only a specific type of content, click the arrow next to the Export All button and make your selection based on posts, pages, or feedback.

Export options, showing the Export All button as well as options to narrow down the selection to specific posts, pages, and feedback.

You will receive an .xml file containing your posts, pages, comments, categories, tags, and references to your site’s images. These files are also referred to as WXR (WordPress eXtended RSS) files.

It’s safe to navigate away from the screen once the export is in progress. We’ll also email you a link to the export file, which will remain available to download for about a week. A notification will appear on the Export page as well, offering you a download link. The link will be a download of a .zip file containing any export files (larger sites will include more than one export file). This ensures that your export process will be fast and complete successfully. When importing into another site, you’ll need to unzip the file, and import each of the .xml files individually.

An XML export can move your images and other media. However, it’s important to know that XML export files don’t contain any images or media. They contain links to images and other media, which will be moved to the new site after you import the XML file to that site. The site you exported from must be publicly accessible. This process can take a few hours depending on how many media files you have.

If you intend to delete content (or the whole site) here at WordPress.com, please wait until after media files have been successfully imported into the new site, and make sure your site is not set to private.

If you are leaving WordPress.com for another host, you can redirect your WordPress.com site address (such as yourgroovysite.wordpress.com), as well as all of your permalinks, to your new domain name with the Site Redirect upgrade.


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Media Exports from Private Sites

If your WordPress.com site is marked “Private,” your media files will not export properly during a regular export. Part of the export process creates links to your media files which another WordPress site will use to import your media.

Before you begin the export process, you will need to make your WordPress.com site public under My Site(s) Settings in order for the media files to work properly in your new imported site. As soon as you have completed the import into your new site and have confirmed your media has been successfully imported, you can return your WordPress.com site’s visibility setting to “Private” again.

Privacy options, with Public selected

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Exporting the Media Library

If you wish to download your images and other media files to your computer, you can use the Export Media Library option.

Export Media Library option on the Export screen

Your media library will be downloaded as a .tar archive. On Mac OS X you can unpack this archive by double-clicking on the icon. For Windows you might need to download a program like 7-Zip to allow you to do this.

If your media library is very large and/or you have a slower connection, the download might time out before it completes. If your browser supports resuming a failed download you can resume it without starting over completely.

Media files downloaded in this way cannot be imported to another WordPress site. If you want to move your media to a different site, it’s best to use the regular export option described above.

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This feature is not currently available on Business and eCommerce plan sites with plugins installed. Instead, you can download a backup of your site which will contain your media files.


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Export Errors

There may be times when you get an error message when attempting to export your site content. The most common reason for this is very large files. To resolve this, you can export sections at a time. If you have several authors on the site, you can export posts by author, or you can do so by date.

The filters include options to export by author, date, category, and status (Published, Draft, Pending Review, Scheduled, Private, or Spam). You can use more than one filter at a time, and export your posts and pages separately.

Export Posts filter has sections for Author, Status, Start Date, End Date, and Category. You can add more than one filter to choose exactly what to export.
Posts export has a filter for Status, where you can choose Published, Scheduled, Draft, Pending Review, Private, or Spam posts to export.

If you’re still having any trouble, it can help to deactivate plugins on your site (which will not be in the export file anyway) and to delete any spam or pending comments to clear out anything you don’t need.


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Backups

If your site is hosted here at WordPress.com, we handle all necessary backups. If a very large meteor were to hit all the WordPress.com servers and destroy them beyond repair, all of your data would still be safe and we could have your site online within three days (after the meteor situation died down, of course).

But if you want to back up your site content manually, you are free to do so by using the Export option described above. This is still a good idea, especially if you’ve assigned additional users to your site. Editors and administrators have the ability to delete any posts or pages, and there is no way to recover material that they remove from your site.

Sites on our Business and eCommerce plans also have access to download entire site backups from the Activity page through Jetpack.


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Exporting/Migrating Subscribers

If you are exporting your site content to another host, your subscribers and followers will not come along in the export. However, if you are moving to a self-hosted WordPress site, you can migrate your subscribers once you install the free Jetpack plugin, with our Subscriber Migration Tool.

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