MySQL documentation ain't what it used to be; it took some experimenting to figure out how to get a utf string into my db from the command-line client interface.
The problem is that for some reason when I run
mysql on my server through
ssh, non-latin characters just get dropped. It might be an ssh config thing, you never know, but I explored the mysql avenue first.
Here's what I found. Suppose you want to update a field containing some non-ascii character, like "à", like this:
update events set timetable = 'de 10h à 12h' where id > 100000;
But after you paste this into your shell, the "à" is missing:
update events set timetable = 'de 10h 12h' where id > 100000;
And your data doesn't get updated the way you expect.
This is the mysql documentation on string literals: string-literals.html
And here's a handy utf8 lookup table: http://www.utf8-chartable.de/
And here's the solution:
update events set timetable = concat(_utf8'de 10h ', _utf8 0xC3A0, _utf8' 12h' where id > 100000);
_utf8 0xC3A0 gives you your "à", you concatenate that with the rest of your string and away you go. It's ugly, but it works, so stop complaining.