I get the following error when trying to export in QGIS to PDF: "Some WMS servers (e.g. UMN mapserver) have a limit for the WIDTH and HEIGHT parameter. Printing layers from such servers may exceed this limit. If this is the case, the WMS layer will not be printed"

I am utilizing an WMS for my aerial imagery in the map and can't export it to a PDF or image. Does anyone know what is going on and whether there is a fix or work around?

Thanks, Mickey

  • 1
    It all depends on the WMS you are using. If the server is limiting the requests, QGIS can't do anything about it.
    – underdark
    Feb 19 '13 at 15:03

Just as underdark said, this depends on the WMS server setting, there is nothing you can do to change that.

One thing you can try is to reduce the resolution of your map within the composer (e.g. from 300 dpi to 150 dpi, so fewer pixels will be requested). This will of course lead to a lower quality map, but has worked for me in the past with German state department WMS services.

Another rather low-tech work around I also used in the past was to open the WMS layer in QGIS, zoom to an acceptable detail level/resolution, and use "save as image" to save the current content of the main view as a georeferenced jpeg or tiff. Then you scroll on a bit and continue the process for the whole area you need covered.

Now you can close the WMS layer, add the "mosaic" of locally saved screenshots (which should line up nicely) and continue to print the map as usual without any error messages.


Someone has posted a solution as a Youtube video overcome qGIS WxH limits

There is no narrative on the video, but the key step seems to be specifying the number of tiles (s/he enters "256") when adding the WMS raster layer to the map. This worked for me.

[Update] I read elsewhere that the 256x256 is the tile size. I'm not sure the units though, whatever units the projection is in? Or pixels?

  • What about in the case of WMTS which you cant enter tile sized 256? Feb 1 '17 at 20:04

Just as SAnderka suggested, lowering the resolution (for me it was down to 90 dpi) solves the problem as it creates a smaller image.

After confirming the message and the location to be saved in, you'll have the option to make changes and the option to reduce the resolution: qGIS export map as image options

This solution might not be suitable for all layers/purposes

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