I fixed the funny characters (Â) in my posts

Earlier today I noticed that lots of my old posts had funny characters in them. Basically characters like apostrophe, ellipsis, quotation marks and also double spaces were screwed up. They all had a  at the start and then some other funny characters (except for the double spaces).

I found out that this was due to WordPress changing it’s default DB_CHARSET to UTF-8 from some older latin default. I upgraded WordPress several months ago from an old version (2.2 or something) to 2.6. This meant that some characters typed under the old default did not display correctly under the new standard.

After some Googling I found out in more detail what the problem and found lots of “hacky” or long-winded solutions that I was not happy with. Then I found a WordPress plugin called: “UTF-8 Database Converter”. This sounded like it would do the trick but it was not tested on a version of WordPress as modern as mine. So anyway I backed up my database and tried it, but it screwed things up. Some posts were truncated after a few words and also my images disappeared. So I restored the database and then “manually” edited every page and comment by looking for  and assessing what needed to be altered. Needless to say, this was a pain, but it’s done now! I’m also relieved to know that the database backup and restore actually works because I’ve never tested it before! :-)

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