flaria February 2016

Oracle Forms Text Field Prompt and Spanish Characters

I've encountered a Oracle Form which has a strange behavior. It seems that it looses the spanish character "ñ" when converting it from Oracle 10gR2 to Oracle 11gR1. This only seems to happen in Text Field Prompts. The rest of the elements in the form seem to display the characters properly. Any suggestions as to what might cause this or what to check to fix it? I've already have checked that the fonts installed support this character and that the NLS related settings look ok.

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flaria February 2016

Well, after a whole day trying to determine what the problem was, it seems that the simplest answer was the right one: The original developer for this form seemed to want to assure that the character was displayed properly and he had a bad setup, so he was setting the text using the SET_ITEM_PROPERTY function, and using the CHR function to escape the character. Something like the following:

SET_ITEM_PROPERTY('BLOCK.PASS_FIELD', PROMPT_TEXT, 'Contrase'||CHR(241)||'a: ');

That for the prompts for the fields which were titled "Contraseña: " in their properties.

In the current set up, it works, but on this new environmet, we are using an UTF8 encoding and the code for the letter "ñ" changes completely. Just for the sake of completeness the code in utf8 would be CHR(50097). But I suggest it would be better just to ask your DBA or SYSADMIN to fix the NLS settings so you can just use the prompt or field properties and don't have to get this "creative" and make other dev waste too much time.

It never ocurred to me to check for this, because the properties seemed to be set up correctly, but a simple test of creating a new field with the same properties finally showed me that the problem was specific to the 4 fields which were already created and searching for code-based attribute changes led me to find this was the issue. So I leave this answer here in the hope that someone else saves a few hours of his time and checks for the simple answer first.

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Asked in February 2016
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