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Extended Characters

A number of languages use character sets that are larger than the range of values of type char. Japanese and Chinese are probably the most familiar examples.

The GNU C library includes support for two mechanisms for dealing with extended character sets: multibyte characters and wide characters. This chapter describes how to use these mechanisms, and the functions for converting between them.

The behavior of the functions in this chapter is affected by the current locale for character classification--the LC_CTYPE category; see section Categories of Activities that Locales Affect. This choice of locale selects which multibyte code is used, and also controls the meanings and characteristics of wide character codes.

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