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10.1 Character Set Support

10.1.1 Character Sets and Collations in General
10.1.2 Character Sets and Collations in MySQL
10.1.3 Specifying Character Sets and Collations
10.1.4 Connection Character Sets and Collations
10.1.5 Configuring the Character Set and Collation for Applications
10.1.6 Character Set for Error Messages
10.1.7 Collation Issues
10.1.8 String Repertoire
10.1.9 Operations Affected by Character Set Support
10.1.10 Unicode Support
10.1.11 UTF-8 for Metadata
10.1.12 Column Character Set Conversion
10.1.13 Character Sets and Collations That MySQL Supports

MySQL includes character set support that enables you to store data using a variety of character sets and perform comparisons according to a variety of collations. You can specify character sets at the server, database, table, and column level. MySQL supports the use of character sets for the MyISAM, MEMORY, NDBCLUSTER, and InnoDB storage engines.

This chapter discusses the following topics:

Character set issues affect not only data storage, but also communication between client programs and the MySQL server. If you want the client program to communicate with the server using a character set different from the default, you'll need to indicate which one. For example, to use the utf8 Unicode character set, issue this statement after connecting to the server:

SET NAMES 'utf8';

For more information about configuring character sets for application use and character set-related issues in client/server communication, see Section 10.1.5, “Configuring the Character Set and Collation for Applications”, and Section 10.1.4, “Connection Character Sets and Collations”.