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Re: Decoding URLs input

From: Yuri Khan
Subject: Re: Decoding URLs input
Date: Sat, 3 Jul 2021 18:10:47 +0700

On Sat, 3 Jul 2021 at 16:41, Jean Louis <> wrote:

> As I am developing Double Opt-In CGI script served by Emacs I am
> unsure if this function is correct to be used the encoded strings that
> come from URL GET requests, like
> (rfc2231-decode-encoded-string "Hello%20there") ⇒ "Hello there"
> If anybody knows or have clues, let me know. In other programming
> languages I have not been thinking of RFC, I don't know which RFC
> applies there.

Why not look at the RFC referenced in order to see whether it is or is
not relevant to your task?

It talks about encoding MIME headers, which is not what you’re dealing
with; and its encoded strings look like
<encoding>'<locale>'<percent-encoded-string>, which is not what you

What you are dealing with is a URL, specifically, its query string
part. These are described in RFC 3986, and its percent-encoding scheme
in sections 2.1 and 2.5.

(url-unhex-string …) will do half the work for you: It will decode
percent-encoded sequences into bytes. By convention, in URLs,
characters are UTF-8-encoded before percent-encoding (see RFC 3986 §
2.5), so you’ll need to use:

    (decode-coding-string (url-unhex-string s) 'utf-8)

to get a fully decoded text string.

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