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I’m getting the warning message “Error converting format to locale encoding: Conversion from character set ‘UTF-8' to ‘646’ is not supported” when launching Stata. What does this mean?

Title   Error converting format to locale encoding: Conversion from character set ‘UTF-8’ to ‘646’ is not supported
Author Jeff Pitblado, StataCorp
Date September 2007; minor revision July 2009

When launching Stata, something like the following warning message appears:

 (xstata-se:7983): GLib-WARNING **: gdate.c:1448Error converting format
 to locale encoding: Conversion from character set 'UTF-8' to '646' is
 not supported

This message can appear on machines with fonts that are based on character sets other than ASCII. The “646” in the above message is an alias for ASCII, where the mapping of aliases is defined in a charset.alias file. The warning is most likely due to a missing charset.alias file.

The following table shows the location and our copy of the charset.alias file for the systems that Stata supports.

Platform location our copy
Sun Solaris 64-bit /opt/gtk2/lib/ charset.alias
Sun Solaris x86_64 /usr/local/lib/ charset.alias
IBM AIX /opt/freeware/lib/ charset.alias
HP-UX /usr/local/lib/ charset.alias

If charset.alias does not exist on your system at the indicated location, download the appropriate charset.alias file for your system from the above table to your computer, and follow the steps below:

  1. Log in with superuser access.
  2. Create the directory corresponding to your system if it does not already exist.
  3. Move charset.alias to its location.
  4. Make sure charset.alias has its file permissions set so that is it readable by all.
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