Converting non-UTF-8 text files

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UTF-8 is the standard encoding for all text entered into NeoOffice (as well as in Mac OS X and most modern applications on other platforms).

Sometimes you need to work with files in "legacy" ISO, Mac, or Windows encodings. If the file is a "plain text" file (as opposed to "styled text" like RTF, .doc, or other "binary" text file formats), or if you can save the document in a plain text format, you can make NeoOffice convert the file to UTF-8.

[edit] Importing the non-UTF-8 file

  • Choose Open…" from the File menu
  • In the "File type" drop-down, select "Text Encoded (*.txt)" near the bottom of the section of text/word processing documents
  • Select the file encoded in ISO-8859-1 (or your encoding, of course)
  • In the resulting "ASCII Filter Options" dialogue, choose "Western Europe (ISO-8859-1)" (or the appropriate encoding for your text file) in the "Character set" drop-down
    If you intend to use this document in NeoOffice, be sure to choose the appropriate language, as well (to ensure spell-check works, among others)

[edit] Exporting the file as UTF-8

  • Choose Save As… from the File menu
  • In the "File type" drop-down, select "Text Encoded (*.txt)" near the bottom of the list
  • Check the "Edit filter settings" checkbox
  • Enter the new filename and hit return
  • Press "Yes" to dismiss the "may loose formatting" dialogue (if enabled)
  • In the resulting "ASCII Filter Options" dialogue, choose "Unicode (UTF-8)" in the "Character set" drop-down
  • Finish saving and all is OK


A bit complicated, but it works fine. Those encoding problems are frequent and boring for non-English speakers (writers…). You can do this conversion in TextEdit, but I wanted to use Neo and only Neo.



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