s427 s427 - 3 months ago 13
PHP Question

Accented characters in mySQL table

I have some texts in French (containing accented characters such as "é"), stored in a MySQL table whose collation is utf8_unicode_ci (both the table and the columns), that I want to output on an HTML5 page.

The HTML page charset is UTF-8 (< meta charset="utf-8" />) and the PHP files themselves are encoded as "UTF-8 without BOM" (I use Notepad++ on Windows). I use PHP5 to request the database and generate the HTML.

However, on the output page, the special characters (such as "é") appear garbled and are replaced by "�".

When I browse the database (via phpMyAdmin) those same accented characters display just fine.

What am I missing here?

(Note: changing the page encoding (through Firefox's "web developer" menu) to ISO-8859-1 solves the problem... except for the special characters that appears directly in the PHP files, which become now corrupted. But anyway, I'd rather understand why it doesn't work as UTF-8 than changing the encoding without understanding why it works. ^^;)


I experienced that same problem before, and what I did are the following

1) Use notepad++(can almost adapt on any encoding) or eclipse and be sure in to save or open it in UTF-8 without BOM.

2) set the encoding in PHP header, using header('Content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8');

3) remove any extra spaces on the start and end of my PHP files.

4) set all my table and columns encoding to utf8mb4_general_ci or utf8mb4_unicode_ci via PhpMyAdmin or any mySQL client you have. A comparison of the two encodings are available here

5) set mysql connection charset to UTF-8 (I use PDO for my database connection )


or just execute the SQL queries before fetching any data

6) use a meta tag <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"/>

7) use a certain language code for French <meta http-equiv="Content-language" content="fr" />

8) change the html element lang attribute to the desired language

<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="fr" lang="fr">

and will be updating this more because I really had a hard time solving this problem before because I was dealing with Japanese characters in my past projects

9) Some fonts are not available in the client PC, you need to use Google fonts to include it on your CSS

10) Don't end your PHP source file with ?>


but if everything I said above doesn't work, try to adjust your encoding depending on the character-set you really want to display, for me I set everything to SHIFT-JIS to display all my japanese characters and it really works fine. But using UFT-8 must be your priority