Google Chrome, like almost every web browser in recent memory, used to have an option to change the character encoding for the webpage being viewed by going to MenuToolsEncoding (or some similar location). This is extraordinarily useful in case the website misrepresents its encoding in its headers, or, failing to do so, Chrome mistakenly detects the encoding of the page.

However, it seems as though in recent versions of Chrome, this option to manually override the character encoding is… missing. Either missing, or moved somewhere very obscure, because I cannot find it anywhere.

I'm currently looking at a mojibake-filled webpage in what I presume should be Russian, which is entirely unreadable and unusable because Chrome is mistakenly rendering it with the wrong character encoding.

How can I change the character encoding for a webpage in Google Chrome?

Edit: For reference, I'm on Version 55.0.2883.87 m, and the encoding option is flat-out missing from the Tools menu:

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2 Answers 2


Unfortunately… a Christmas-box from Google Chrome: Chrome encoding options gone?:

Chrome 55 has removed the Encoding menu and Chrome will do auto-encoding detection now:

https://bugs.chromium.org/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=597488 - Remove encoding menu

Manual encoding selection is not necessary any more as the new encoding detector is turned on by default.

Manual encoding switching may be able to be done by use of Chrome extensions.

Marked as best answer by Kameron M - Community Manager

  • 109
    sigh~ Thanks for the information; rather a pity the new encoding detector is hot garbage.
    – Meshaal
    Dec 27, 2016 at 1:47
  • 18
    This is a really sad turn of events. It seems that Chrome cannot correctly detect Shift-JIS encoding properly in all cases, which is becoming a hassle for me while doing research on Japanese webpages that haven't been updated in many years... At least Firefox lets me manually select Shift-JIS.
    – recognizer
    Feb 9, 2017 at 21:29
  • 9
    Unfortunately... many websites still mangle their own encodings.
    – Nick T
    Jun 13, 2017 at 20:43
  • 9
    Chrome can't even detect codepage on the saved G+ page. This is retarded. Google's community managers are retarded too if they mark such answers as accepted and freeze threads so I can't even tell them there that they broke Chrome.
    – Nakilon
    Feb 13, 2018 at 6:44
  • 9
    Just adding my comment here screaming that whoever decided to remove this probably don't read anything other then ASCII, coming here after opening a txt file that isn't detected correctly, not to mention all pages that needs different encodings.
    – NiKiZe
    Jun 10, 2018 at 16:42

You can now use extensions. Here is an example https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/set-character-encoding/bpojelgakakmcfmjfilgdlmhefphglae

  • I tried to add a user-defined encoding (ISO-8859-1) in the settings of that addon without any luck. The "save" button does nothing. Jun 16, 2018 at 14:54
  • @AndersLindén Try to close the option page then recheck the result Jun 16, 2018 at 15:22
  • I have tried this extension, but unfortunatelly, it require to refresh the page. And it is not able to resend the POST data :-(
    – Ondrej
    Nov 21, 2018 at 17:14
  • The huge and bloated Chrome needs an extension to do something that all the other browsers have done for decades, since the inception of internet. Apr 24, 2020 at 18:36
  • 1
    @Rainb, It works. Here is an example nta.go.jp/taxes/kids/hatten/txt/14.txt Feb 2, 2021 at 14:00

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