How do I use the OS X Terminal command split to split a file into several pieces, and store them in a different folder, on a different drive?

The reason is that I need to move files to a FAT32 store, but they are too large for the FAT32 4 GB file size constraint.

Also, I don't have enough space left on my HFS+ drive to split it there, and then move it.

Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


If Mac OS X's split acts just like the GNU Coreutils split, cd to the directory you wish the split files to reside in and then run the following command:

split -b <size> /location/of/big/file
  • BIG THANKS! :D Seems to work, as I'm currently "split-copying" now. Here's what I did: CD'd to the directory I wanted the files in, just as you told, and then I typed: split -b 2048m /location/of/big/file But I chose some other directories, though LOL
    – Kebman
    Jul 20, 2011 at 22:57
  • 3
    The obvious next question would be how to join the files back together again. The join command isn’t suitable. The cat command can be used instead: cat file1 file2 file 3 > onebigfile or cat file* > onebigfile
    – user535673
    Jan 16, 2015 at 13:10

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