[ic] Non-US keys = UTF-8 issue?

Grant emailgrant at gmail.com
Fri Feb 8 09:37:23 EST 2008

> >>> I have a Swedish address stored in mysql and it is full of strange
> >>> characters.  Some stars, some paragraph symbols, etc.  Should I be
> >>> declaring UTF-8 somehow in dbconf/mysql/orders.mysql to avoid this?
> >>> Is there any way to recover the correct data at this point?
> >>>
> >> Well, first you need to isolate whether or not it's correct in the
> >> database, and not through Interchange.
> >>
> >> MySQL has two configurations with regards to characters: character sets
> >> and collation.  Character sets define the encoding for the bytes, whereas
> >> collation defines how to manipulate said data through sorting and other
> >> means.  See http://dev.mysql.com/doc/refman/5.0/en/charset-general.html
> >> for more information.
> >>
> >> As far as Interchange goes, I'm not entirely sure what the state of UTF-8
> >> support is, but from what I understand, it's less than ideal.  It may not
> >> be functional at all.
> >>
> >> If the data encoded in UTF-8 Unicode was saved in MySQL under a different
> >> character set, it may not be recoverable whatsoever.  Your first tactic
> >> will be to attempt to change the character set for that field (or table)
> >> alone, and hope MySQL has not changed it.  Something like:
> >>
> >> ALTER TABLE foo CHARACTER SET utf8 COLLATE utf8_swedish_ci;
> >>
> >> should suffice.  Note also that your client's encoding will need to be
> >> utf8 (SET NAMES 'utf8';), as well as any terminal emulator you may be
> >> using, and any software such as screen or ssh that will transmit the data.
> >>  I'm actually not sure that ssh needs specific instructions to encode
> >> characters, but your terminal emulator (PuTTy, xterm, rxvt, etc.) will
> >> definitely need proper configuration.  Oh, and two more things:  MySQL
> >> will need to be compiled with support for utf8, and you will need to have
> >> that locale available (assuming Linux).
> >>
> >> Gee, isn't Unicode fun?!  (To be fair, it's the software support for it
> >> that is lacking.  Don't believe me?  Try to edit a utf8 encoded file in
> >> vim in screen on OpenBSD.  Just *try* to.)
> >
> > Thanks a lot Jordan.  I have confirmed that my browser does display
> > UTF-8 characters properly, but the Swedish characters showed up
> > incorrectly on the initial email order receipt sent to me.  I checked
> > and the receipt is built with [value] tags so the characters must be
> > messed up as soon as they hit IC right?  Because of this I don't think
> > tinkering with mysql will fix the problem.  Please correct me if I'm
> > wrong.
> Email order receipt will not be send as UTF8 charset, so it's quite
> plausible that Swedish characters are messed up. Proper UTF8 support
> is still under development.
> Regards
>          Racke

Will IC pass unicode characters properly to mysql?  Should they be
displayed properly with [value]?

- Grant

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