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Cyrillic letters turned to question marks. [closed]

asked 2017-12-04 21:42:14 +0100

h455566hh gravatar image

updated 2020-08-11 21:57:48 +0100

Alex Kemp gravatar image

I created a note pad text file and opened it with LibreOffice writer. Then finished two pages in russian language, saved the thing in a default format that Office chooses automatically. Later I opened the same file only to stumble upon two pages full of question marks "?". Can anyone help me recover the document, everything I tried was to no avail.

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Closed for the following reason question is not relevant or outdated by Alex Kemp
close date 2020-08-11 21:58:07.638546


I don't think that anyone can help you until you share the problem file.

gabix gravatar imagegabix ( 2017-12-05 08:35:06 +0100 )edit

I just started to use this forum. How can I upload the file here? And the forum says I need 3 points to upload files.

h455566hh gravatar imageh455566hh ( 2017-12-05 13:13:55 +0100 )edit

Use file sharing services such as Dropbox, Yandex Disk etc.

gabix gravatar imagegabix ( 2017-12-05 13:26:43 +0100 )edit
h455566hh gravatar imageh455566hh ( 2017-12-06 11:45:18 +0100 )edit

What was the "default format that Office chooses automatically"? If you have opened a text file created in notepad (.TXT), then LibreOffice should have asked you on save, if you want to save it as plain text file (with some loss), or to its own format (ODF). So which choice have you perceived to be automatically chosen?

I suppose that you have saved the file to TXT, and it was saved with wrong encoding. Then opened with ?, and re-saved to ODT (too late). This explains the problem.

Mike Kaganski gravatar imageMike Kaganski ( 2017-12-07 11:27:27 +0100 )edit

So how can it be recovered?

h455566hh gravatar imageh455566hh ( 2017-12-09 13:43:35 +0100 )edit

No way to recover this document. It contains just question marks that resulted from incorrect encoding chosen initially. You will need to start from the initial file that you mentioned. But be advised, that don't save back to TXT again, or you risk to have this trouble again. Use ODT when possible.

Mike Kaganski gravatar imageMike Kaganski ( 2017-12-09 13:50:59 +0100 )edit

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answered 2017-12-06 15:54:16 +0100

gabix gravatar image

Unfortunately, this file cannot be recovered: the question marks are just question marks, not other garbled characters. It is hard to tell what went wrong.

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@h455566hh: At some step in the production chain, you probably had a conversion with a utility/filter which didn't understand Unicode and replaced multibyte characters, like Cyrillics, with a question mark.

ajlittoz gravatar imageajlittoz ( 2017-12-07 08:27:30 +0100 )edit

Anyway to recover the text?

h455566hh gravatar imageh455566hh ( 2017-12-09 13:43:53 +0100 )edit

If you no longer have the original file, no

ajlittoz gravatar imageajlittoz ( 2017-12-09 15:39:14 +0100 )edit

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Asked: 2017-12-04 21:42:14 +0100

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Last updated: Dec 06 '17