Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I would like to encode some basic text strings into QP. I have tested several online encoders on the web, and none of them worked. One of them can be found at Webatic. I can use it to decode QP into something readable, if I already have something encoded in QP. But it doesn't work for me the other way around. I'm not sure why?... something wrong with the PHP code on the site? Or am I doing it wrong?

I don't see why all the web sites I tested would have this problem. Perhaps it is generally harder to encode than to decode QP? I had UTF-8 character set both on the site and in Firefox 27 browser.

Here is an example of decoding QP.


Graphic character:

But when going in the opposite direction, i.e. encoding "Thomas" into QP it only prints out "Thomas". I'm referring to the web tool over at Webatic here. But I tested several others and none of them are doing what they are supposed to.

Can this be done in Notepad++ instead of relying on web based tools?

share|improve this question
The example given here above with "Thomas" was in fact QP encoded in the Contacts.vcf file I exported from my Android 4.2.2 phone. So I have the string like N;CHARSET=UTF-8;ENCODING=QUOTED-PRINTABLE:=C3=96=73=74=68=6F=6C=6D;=54=68=6F=6D‌​=61=73. "Thomas" doesn't have to be QP encoded in fact, since it uses only printable ASCII characters. Despite this fact, there it was, along with other contact names that were not QP encoded. – sammyg Feb 18 '14 at 18:39
This might in fact be the reason why I was having some issues with the dialer on my phone the other month, it had problems finding and identifying contacts. I have been carrying around these contacts for years. I'm not sure what software, phone model or brand, or mobile OS introduced these. It's not looking nice. – sammyg Feb 18 '14 at 18:42
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Thomas does not need to be encoded. It contains only ASCII printable characters and thus can be transmitted over the network without problems. That is why you are getting Thomas as output. So there is no problem with the site.

Quoted-printable encoding is intended to represent non-ASCII characters by combination of ASCII characters to allow transmission of strings with non-ASCII characters over the network safely.

As example here is Russian word Привет (hello) represented as Quoted-printable string (UTF-8) =D0=9F=D1=80=D0=B8=D0=B2=D0=B5=D1=82 with help of the Webatic site.

More data on Quoted-Printable and why it was created here and on Wikipedia.

As per Sourceforge there is support for quoted-printable encoding in Notepad++ since release 4.8.5 (in MIME Tools plugin).

share|improve this answer
Is this why characters such as Å, Ä, Ö, Ü and Ć, Č, Đ, Š, Ž are in fact being QP encoded as =C3=85, =C3=84, =C3=96, =C3=9C and =C4=86, =C4=8C, =C4=90, =C5=A0, =C5=BD? Because they are non-ASCII characters? So basically QP encoding is used on all ASCII characters above code 127 i.e. the extended ASCII? – sammyg Feb 17 '14 at 22:15
Yes, from Wikipedia: All printable ASCII characters (decimal values between 33 and 126) may be represented by themselves, except "=" (decimal 61).. So, characters outside of this range must be encoded. – VL-80 Feb 17 '14 at 22:18
The range is 32 - 127, but since 32 is Space and 127 is the Del command, only 33 - 126 are printable (except for Equal which needs to be encoded). Equal (=) is represented as =3D in QP. Got it. Thanks! – sammyg Feb 17 '14 at 22:25

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.