Read/write .txt file with special characters

0 votes
asked Jan 4, 2011 by svenkapudija

I open Notepad (Windows) and write

Some lines with special characters
Special: Žđšćč

and go to Save As... "someFile.txt" with Encoding set to UTF-8.

In Java I have

FileInputStream fis = new FileInputStream(new File("someFile.txt"));
InputStreamReader isr = new InputStreamReader(fis, "UTF-8");
BufferedReader in = new BufferedReader(isr);

String line;
while((line = in.readLine()) != null) {                         

But I get question marks and similar "special" characters. Why?

EDIT: I have this input (one line in .txt file)


and this code

FileInputStream fis = new FileInputStream(new File(fileName));
InputStreamReader isr = new InputStreamReader(fis, "UTF-8");
BufferedReader in = new BufferedReader(isr);

String line;
while((line = in.readLine()) != null) {
    Toast.makeText(mContext, line, Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();

    Pattern p = Pattern.compile(",");
    String[] article = p.split(line);

    Toast.makeText(mContext, article[0], Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();
    Toast.makeText(mContext, Integer.parseInt(article[0]), Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();

And Toast output (for ones who aren't familiar with Android, Toast is just a method to show a pop-up on screen with particular text in it) is fine. Console shows "weird characters" (probably because of encoding in console window). But it fails at parsing an integer because console says this (warning: toast output is just fine) - Problem?

It seems like the String is containing some "weird" characters which Toast can't show/render but when I try to parse it, it crashes. Suggestions?

If I put ANSI in NotePad it works (integer parsing) and there are no weird chars as in the picture above, but of course my special characters aren't working.

6 Answers

0 votes
answered Jan 4, 2011 by konstantin-komissarc

Notepad may not be able to handle non-ascii characters. Try another text editor. If you want to stick to what's available in windows install, try wordpad.

0 votes
answered Jan 4, 2011 by magnus

Your code looks right - but a very common, and easy, error is to misstake what is printed to screen to what's in the String. Check with a debugger if the string isn't already read right.

0 votes
answered Jan 4, 2011 by balusc

It's the output console which doesn't support those characters. Since you're using Eclipse, you need to ensure that it's configured to use UTF-8 for this. You can do this by Window > Preferences > General > Workspace > Text File Encoding > set to UTF-8.

See also:

Update as per the updated question and the comments, apparently the UTF-8 BOM is the culprit. Notepad by default adds the UTF-8 BOM on save. It look like that the JRE on your HTC doesn't swallow that. You may want to consider to use the UnicodeReader example as outlined in this answer instead of InputStreamReader in your code. It autodetects and skips the BOM.

FileInputStream fis = new FileInputStream(new File(fileName));
UnicodeReader ur = new UnicodeReader(fis, "UTF-8");
BufferedReader in = new BufferedReader(ur);

Unrelated to the actual problem, it's a good practice to close resources in finally block so that you ensure that they will be closed in case of exceptions.

BufferedReader reader = null;
try {
    reader = new BufferedReader(new UnicodeReader(new FileInputStream(fileName), "UTF-8"));
    // ...
} finally {
    if (reader != null) try { reader.close(); } catch (IOException logOrIgnore) {}

Also unrelated, I'd suggest to put Pattern p = Pattern.compile(","); outside the loop, or even make it a static constant, because it's relatively expensive to compile it and it's unnecessary to do this everytime inside a loop.

0 votes
answered Jan 5, 2011 by xagyg
"Not all sequences of bytes are valid UTF-8."


under "Invalid byte sequences" for specific details.

0 votes
answered Jan 1, 2012 by user929404

Notepad does not save special symbols correctly. I had a similar problem and I used Notepad++ instead and selected UTf-8 encoding from there. When I did this, my program no longer crashed when applying String library methods to it unlike when I created the text file in Notepad.

0 votes
answered Sep 15, 2017 by darshan-kumar

Are you using the character the conversion as part of servlet request/response ? If yes, request.setEncoding("UTF-8")

should solve your purpose.

Welcome to Q&A, where you can ask questions and receive answers from other members of the community.
Website Online Counter