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Changing US7ASCII TO WE8ISO8859P1 in 8i, 9i, 10g and 11g (Doc ID 1963942.1)

Last updated on FEBRUARY 03, 2019

Applies to:

Oracle Database - Standard Edition - Version to [Release 8.1.7 to 11.2]
Oracle Database - Enterprise Edition - Version to [Release 8.1.7 to 11.2]
Information in this document applies to any platform.
***Checked for relevance on 13-Sep-2016***


To provide a guide to change the NLS_CHARACTERSET from US7ASCII to WE8ISO8859P1

We strongly advice to follow this note also when using export/import from an US7ASCI to a WE8ISO8859P1 database.


select value from NLS_DATABASE_PARAMETERS where parameter='NLS_CHARACTERSET';

This note is ONLY for 8i, 9i, 10g and 11g it cannot be used for Oracle RDBMS 12c
For other characterset conversions and Oracle 12c please see <Note 225912.1> Changing the Database Character Set ( NLS_CHARACTERSET )

For non-Unicode character sets the best choice are xx8MSWIN125x character sets, even if the database itself runs on an Unix platform.
The reason is simply that the majority of the clients are windows based systems, hence the best non-Unicode characterset for a database is a characterset that can store all the characters known by those clients, which means an xx8MSWIN125x characterset.
<Note 555823.1> Changing from US7ASCII or WE8ISO8859P1 to WE8MSWIN1252 in 8i, 9i, 10g and 11g.



Any DBA wanting to change the current NLS_CHARACTERSET from US7ASCII to WE8ISO8859P1 in 8i, 9i, 10g and 11g.


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In this Document
 1) Prerequisites
 US7ASCII versus WE8ISO8859P1
 2) Check the source database for:
 2.a) Invalid objects.
 2.b) Orphaned Datapump master tables (10g and up)
 2.c) Unneeded sample schema's/users.
 2.d) Objects in the recyclebin (10g an up)
 3) Check if there are no invalid code points in the database for the current NLS_CHARACTERSET:
 4) Csscan lists "Lossy" data in the scan performed in step 3.
 5) Final Csscan run when going to WE8ISO8859P1
 5.a)  If there IS NO "Lossy" data in point 3 then perform a last check with csscan :
 5.b) If there IS "lossy" data in point 3 and you are sure the "Lossy" data is actual WE8ISO8859P1 data then perform a last check with csscan :
 5.c) Both scans will will create 3 files :
 5.c.1) The needed csscan output for 8i/9i  to use "Alter Database Character Set".
 5.c.2) The needed csscan output for 10g and up to use Csalter.
 6) Performing the actual character set change:
 6.a) For 9i and 8i
 6.b) For 10g and up:
 7) Make sure clients are using the correct NLS_LANG setting:
 7a) Microsoft Windows clients
 7b) Unix clients
 7c) Other clients:
 8) What about Physical / Logical Standby databases?
 9) Other Often Asked Questions:
 9a) Can I go from WE8ISO8859P1 -> US7ASCII ?

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