Is there any ways to migrate from MapInfo's data with WOR project file to ArcGIS MXD project file without leaving all styles and coordinate system? I know that I can convert from TAB files to SHP files via ogr2ogr but what's about the styles information?

P.S. I have MapInfo Professional 12 and ArcGIS Desktop 9.3.1. Also, I can't use the Tab Reader Tool now.

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    Perhaps FME can do something about styles stored in TAB and extract it as a LYR file. For the WOR part it may be harder because the logic behind WOR and MXD are so different. Feb 19, 2014 at 10:04
  • Let me see. You mean that FME can get from TAB 2 files(SHP+LYR). Could you please explain where information about styles is stored in mapInfo? I'm not a mapinfo expert. Feb 19, 2014 at 13:18
  • Styles are stored inside the MAP file (part of a TAB file). But a WOR may also define a thematic map/styles. From your description I can not tell of it is the raw TAB's styles you are after or what is defined inside the WOR file. And I only said FME may be able to do this. I'm not an FME expert. Feb 19, 2014 at 15:19
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    FME 2014 has a .mxd reader (no writer) but you need a special liscence. Unfortunately you cant read/write .wor with FME 2014. Feb 19, 2014 at 15:21

1 Answer 1


There are some fundamental differences between MapInfo's styling and ArcGIS's.

Most importantly, MapInfo styles features per-feature in a style string (it's a weird encoding, including a funny representation of RGB in a single int value). ArcGIS styles things in a MapInfo 'thematic', which really means, in categories (that's a over-simplification, as there are other ways to do it, but that's default).

Now, there are some examples where folks have converted MapInfo styles into QGIS styles, which are similar in structure to ArcGIS styles, see: http://nathanw.net/2011/08/08/new-tool-mapinfo-to-qgis-style-converter/. And you can use FME to read and set MapInfo style attributes. I have a couple of custom FME transformers that convert a native MI style into a string that you can store in SQL Server and back again, which is a sort-of similar thing, but still per-feature.

Of course, your real question is about a whole workspace. Short answer is: no. The two packages are far too dissimilar for that to work in any nice way. And, really, there is so much different between them that you'd be missing out on functionality if you could convert them.

So, my recommendation is do it all again. It's not hard to make a workspace or MXD (or a QGIS project) and it gives you an opportunity to rethink things.

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