How to convert an ArcGIS Style to QGIS 3 - Tutorial


Spatial data created / processed by commercial or open source software follows standards by institutions like the Open Geospatial Consortium; this standards allow the interoperability of the vector or raster data among different software however standards apply to the position but not the style. Styles from ArcGIS were not easy to convert to formats compatible with QGIS, specially if you don’t have the commercial software.

Governmental offices release spatial data as land use, land cover, infraestructures, and sometimes release styles in ArcGIS formats posing a great obstacle for the QGIS users. This tutorial shows the complete procedure to convert ArcGIS Style to QGIS as *.xml format with a case study of land cover from Costa Rica. The tutorial is developed in Windows, if you are a Linux and Mac users its necessary to install Mdbtools on your own operating system.

Credits: The tutorial is a video version of the procedure developed by open.gis.lab on this link:



These are the urls required for the tutorial:

Slyr url:

Mdbtools url:

Input files

You can download the input files for this tutorial here.


Saul Montoya

Saul Montoya es Ingeniero Civil graduado de la Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú en Lima con estudios de postgrado en Manejo e Ingeniería de Recursos Hídricos (Programa WAREM) de la Universidad de Stuttgart con mención en Ingeniería de Aguas Subterráneas y Hidroinformática.

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