I have created my Oracle 12c database with database character set as AL32UTF8 and I have been told by the developers that it needs to be changed to UTF8. National character set is UTF8.

Is it supported and feasible conversion of character set from AL32UTF8 to UTF8?

1 Answer 1


In Oracle 12c you should use the Database Migration Assistant for Unicode (DMU) to perform this operation.


Your proposed conversion is very straightforward and shouldn't be a problem, however: Are you sure this is what you want to do? Oracle recommends AL32UTF8 above UTF-8, unless it is absolutely neccessary:

Oracle supports two encodings of Unicode as the database character set: UTF-8 through the AL32UTF8 character set and CESU-8 through the UTF8 character set. (Note the use of the hyphen in the name of Unicode encoding and the lack of a hyphen in the name of Oracle character set. This differentiation is used throughout Oracle documentation.) UTF-8 is a multibyte varying width Unicode encoding using 1 to 4 bytes per character. CESU-8 is a compatibility-only encoding, discouraged for information exchange by the Unicode standard. CESU-8 is very similar to UTF-8 except that so-called supplementary characters encoded by UTF-8 in 4 bytes, CESU-8 encodes as pairs of 3-byte codes. Oracle Database has deprecated the UTF8 character set, so it should not be used as a database character set except when explicitly required by an application, such as Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i.

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