Unicode

Unicode and SQL Developer (Windows)

Display

I have found very little SQL Developer documentation that discusses the product's handling of Unicode data. Here is what I have pieced together though. The SQL Developer (v1.5.4) manual page entitled "NLS Parameter Values in the SQL Developer Environment" says this about its NLS settings.

SQL Developer initially (after installation) uses parameter values that include the following:

  NLS_LANG,"AMERICAN"
  NLS_TERR,"AMERICA"
  NLS_CHAR,"AL32UTF8"
  NLS_SORT,"BINARY"
  NLS_CAL,"GREGORIAN"
  NLS_DATE_LANG,"AMERICAN"
  NLS_DATE_FORM,"DD-MON-RR"

Given that there is no way to change SQL Developer's character set while it is running it seems safe to assume SQL Developer sessions always operate with an AL32UTF8 character set (UTF-8 encoding). Data from databases using different character sets will most likely be converted to AL32UTF8 before it is displayed in SQL Developer's Results tab.

Thus, no environment or application setup is required to display Unicode characters properly. It just works correctly right out of the box.

Export Files

When exporting data from the Results tab (Right-click / Export Data) the export file's encoding can be set by first clicking on the "Browse" button in the Export Data dialog

Export Data Window

and then selecting an encoding from the "File Encoding" popup list.

File Encoding Popup List

The following table maps some of SQL Developer's encoding names to IANA standard encoding names.

SQL Developer Encoding Name
IANA Standard Encoding Name
Byte Order Mark
Notes
cp850
cp850 none
Cp1252
windows-1252 none
windows-1252
windows-1252 none
UTF-8
UTF-8
none
UTF8 UTF-8 none do not confuse this with the Oracle database "UTF8" character set's encoding, which is CESU-8
UTF-16 UTF-16 BE BOM
UTF_16 UTF-16 BE BOM
UTF-16LE UTF-16LE none
UTF-16BE UTF-16BE none

The default encoding used for export files can be set in the Tools / Preferences / Environment / Encoding popup list.

Encoding Preference Popup List




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