Joshua Thijssen writes; I sometimes hear: “make everything utf-8 in your database, and all will be fine”. This so-called advice could not be further from the truth. Indeed, it will take care of internationalization and code-page problems when you use UTF-8, but it comes with a price, which may be too high for you to pay, especially if you have never realized it’s there..Indexing is everything… or at least.. good indexing makes or breaks your database. The fact remains: the smaller your indexes, the more index records can be loaded into memory and the faster the searches will be. So using small indexes pays off. Period. But what has got this to do with UTF-8?
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Having covered the preparation and character set options of performing a latin1 to utf8 MySQL migration, just how do you perform the migration correctly.
Complete story again at Migrating MySQL latin1 to utf8 – The process .
Continuing on from preparation in our MySQL latin1 to utf8 migration let us first understand where MySQL uses character sets. MySQL defines the character set at 4 different levels for the structure of data.
via Migrating MySQL latin1 to utf8 – Character Set Options
Before undertaking such migration the first step is a lesson in understanding more about how latin1 and utf8 work and interact in MySQL. latin1 in a common and historical character set used in MySQL. utf8 first available in MySQL Version 4.1 is an encoding supporting multiple bytes and is the system default in MySQL 5.0
via Migrating MySQL latin1 to utf8 – Preparation