[dsc] DSC and base64

Duane Wessels wessels at measurement-factory.com
Tue Sep 25 18:15:59 UTC 2007

On Tue, 25 Sep 2007, Pierre LEBRECH wrote:

> Question : what is it? I've never heard of base64 within DSC documentation.

Base64 is a method for encoding a string into another string that contains
only "safe" or printable characters.

DSC uses base64 encoding when a query name contains "special" characters
because certain characters should not appear in the XML attribute value.
This is mentioned in the user manual (around p34):

 	For some indexers these values are numeric, for others they
 	are strings.  If the value contains certain non-printable
 	characters, the string is base64-encoded and the optional
 	BASE64 attribute is set to 1.

In your case, that particular query name was actually a URL.  You can
see it with a command like this:

   echo 'aHR0c ... h5LnBs' | /usr/local/lib/python2.5/base64.py -d | less

Duane W.

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