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Python 2.7 - French characters

Posted on 2016-09-17
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Last Modified: 2016-10-02
Hi there,

1.html contains French characters (éèÉç etc...)

In Python 2.7, I need to print the file content with the proper French characters.

Thanks for your help,
Rene

f = open('1.html', 'r')
file_contents = f.read()
print (file_contents)
f.close()

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Question by:ReneGe
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6 Comments
 
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Accepted Solution

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pepr earned 2000 total points
ID: 41803395
In Python 2.x, the open() function returns the open file object that pretends to be the one that returns a text file content. Actually, it does not work with any encoding, and it returns streams of bytes in a string variable. Actually, Python string object is a string of bytes. The only thing to help you reliably with national alphabet are unicode strings (the u'prefixed string literals' and the like converted strings of bytes.

In Python 2.x you can use codecs.open() function of the standard codecs module. It differs from the open() by the encoding arguments that tells how the bytes from the file should be converted to the unicode string.

When the unicode string is printed to console, it is likely to be converte to the correct encoding.

In Python 3.x, the string type is actually what the u'string' is in Python 2, and the open() is what codecs.open() was in Python 2.

import codecs
with codecs.open('1.html', 'r', encoding='utf-8') as f:
    content = f.read()
    print content

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Author Comment

by:ReneGe
ID: 41803408
Hi pepr,

Thanks for your prompt response, explanation, and code.

I tried your code and this is what I got.

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "1.py", line 3, in <module>
    content = f.read()
  File "C:\Python27\lib\codecs.py", line 674, in read
    return self.reader.read(size)
  File "C:\Python27\lib\codecs.py", line 480, in read
    newchars, decodedbytes = self.decode(data, self.errors)
UnicodeDecodeError: 'utf8' codec can't decode byte 0xab in position 1246: invalid start byte


Cheers
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LVL 29

Assisted Solution

by:pepr
pepr earned 2000 total points
ID: 41803942
If your file uses a different encoding, you have to pass that encoding, not UTF-8. If the file was generated on Windows, then you probably should use 'cp1252' instead. If it was stored on a Unix-based system, it can be ISO-8859-15.

If the HTML was constructed properly, you can find the encoding at the beginning, in the head section.
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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 41825667
Hi ReneGe. Have you found a solution?
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Author Comment

by:ReneGe
ID: 41825669
Hi pepr,

Sorry for taking so long to reply.

cp1252 worked :)

Thank you so much for your help :)

Cheers mate!
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by:ReneGe
ID: 41825670
Thanks
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