Re: Q: Filesystem Encoding

From: Jungshik Shin (
Date: Wed Jul 10 2002 - 08:43:21 EDT

On Wed, 10 Jul 2002, Shlomi Tal wrote:

> Hello Unicoders, I have a question about filesystems. I never use anything
> but ASCII characters in filenames, and I would like to know if it is still
> justified. Of the various filesystems in use, I know only that the Joliet
> CDFS uses UCS-2BE. What about FAT16, FAT32, NTFS and Linux Ext2?

  NTFS uses UTF-16LE and Linux Ext2 like most other Unix fs is
encoding-neutral/encoding-blind as long as a certain set of restrictions
are satisfied, which is the case of UTF-8 (that's why it used to be
called UTF-FSS with FSS standing for 'file system safe').

> In short: should I still stick to ASCII alone in filenames, or are there
> filesystems where I really don't have to anymore? Thanks in advance.

  Definitely/unconditionally no for NTFS. As for Linux ext2(and most other
Unix fs'), unless you mix up UTF-8 and legacy encodings (which you
wouldn't because you have never used non-ASCII), it's all right to switch
to UTF-8 and use non-ASCII chars.


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