GPG and charsets (Windows)

Andreas John ajgpgml at
Sat Jan 4 15:43:02 CET 2003


Well, it seems that there is some general problem due to inconsistency with charsets under windows.
I'm using GPG1.2.1 on Win98se, and the console ( here is using CP850 ("chcp" typed at the prompt returns "Active Codepage: 850").

The german translated texts are properly displayed with this charset, e.g. gpg --version displays "ü" as it should be and output redirected to disc and viewed from there with an Editor using standard cp1252 (aka. Latin1, ISO-8859-1) shows no "ü" but some strange char.

So far so good.

But the problems get started with passphrases and user-ids, as these stay with iso-8859-1 (as starting gpg with -vvv seem to prove), and the input from the console is not properly translated in that case.

This means: I have two possibilities: Don't use the console for --gen-key and let frontends do the translation (this would be ridiculous!) or live with Keys with "strange" UserIDs; again this cannot be really recommended, esp. as there is already Unicode support in the form of UTF-8 inside GPG!

So I would suggest to let either the gettext-output respect --charset-parameter too, or use the windows-apis to get the console-charset translated for use in GPG.

I would prefer the latter, as this wouldn't require the user to specify a charset in the gpg-conf.

Okay, this step might break some old passphrases, but you could offer a compatibility-option for those who are concerned.


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