French characters and Accents not displayed (PHP mbstring ?)

We are using a brand new server running Fedora and Plesk. Only a few sites and a support system (ESupport) installed so far, however we cannot see the French accents being displayed properly.
According to an admin, the problem was narrowed down to the PHP config - A feature called mbstring ?
You can see the problem here :
The correct sentence displayed should be
"Votre demande a bien été transmise à notre service Service Clients é à î, elle sera lue et traitée très prochainement.".

What must be corrected or updated so that our server displays French correctly ?

Who is Participating?
DarthModConnect With a Mentor Commented:
PAQed with points (250) refunded

Community Support Moderator
try different character encoding: western (ISO-8859-1)

or some others not sure....
Free Tool: ZipGrep

ZipGrep is a utility that can list and search zip (.war, .ear, .jar, etc) archives for text patterns, without the need to extract the archive's contents.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way to say thank you for being a part of the community.

DenisvtAuthor Commented:
Should that be specified in our PHP config and how ? Is it related to "mbstring" ?
That problem is not related to mbstring (mbstring is used for japanese/chinese strings where a char consits of multiple bytes, so a strlen must do something different as for ISO-charsets)
make sure there are the correct meta-tags generated in HTML as Luxana suggested e.g:
<meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-15">
<meta http-equiv="content-language" content="fr">
Votre demande a bien été transmise à notre service Service Clients é à î, elle sera lue et traitée très prochainement.
Then your string should be displayed correctly
DenisvtAuthor Commented:
We have once again experienced the same problem. A whole website that worked fine on another older server was transfered onto that new one, and all accents in French would not display.
I'm desperate to understand that big problem, never seen that before and we cannot host a site if half of its contents looks like rubbish...

You may compare the two php.ini from the new and the old server, maybe there are different settings which show the wrong characterset for that page.
DenisvtAuthor Commented:
I lost a lot of hair on that one, and endless hours...Solution found by chance while discussing with an IT friend who apparently saw that before. Not sure if that applies to all Plesk servers by default, but apparently some have a "bad" default Apache config (the default charset in httpd.conf), that creates problem for Web contents with accents, such as pages in French. Solution :

Edit that Apache config file httpd.conf :

In /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf  look for:
AddDefaultCharset UTF-8
comment it out (#AddDefaultCharset UTF-8)
Restart apache server (service httpd restart).

All sites fine since then...
Thanks to those who helped.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.