Importing documents

Importing an existing document to GitBook is easy. Upload it when creating a book using the Import tab.

Accepted formats

Type Extension
Microsoft Word Document .docx
DocBook v5.x .xml
HTML file .html

To use this feature as its most, we recommend using:

  • Microsoft Word 2007+ documents
  • DocBook v5.x documents

If you have existing DocBook documents in version 4, consider converting it automatically to version 5 for optimized compatibility.


The import feature uses the gitbook-convert CLI utility. This module is in charge of every aspect of the conversion of the original document to markdown files, along with the creation of the

gitbook-convert divide a big document into chapters and sub-chapters, based on the document's structure. Thus, each first-level header of the original document will be converted to a chapter. If a chapter contains second-level headers, a folder instead of a new file is created for this chapter. This folder will contain each sub-chapters.

In a chapter's folder, a file containing the chapter preface is created. The whole content before the first second-level header is considered to be a chapter preface. The same rule applies for the whole content before the first first-level header which is used as the book's preface.

For .docx documents, gitbook-convert will also export all included images into the assets/ folder.

If you ever need more flexibility, consider using gitbook-convert locally, create a repository and import it using Git or GitHub.


We're always happy to help out with your books or any other questions you might have. You can ask a question or signal an issue on the following form at