URL Characters Meanings


In this article I will talk about URL Characters Meanings.

URL Characters Meanings

If you are an attentive person you should have seen %20 text in the URL of your explorer at least once while you are surfing on the internet. In this article I will talk about these strange texts in the URLs.

You can use URL encoding for translating unprintable characters or characters with special meaning within URLs. You may also need this encoding information while you are working with web services URLs or anything you need to do with URLs while you are developing your software.

Encoding is done by putting % symbol into the first character and putting the hexadecimal digits that correspond to the position of the character in the ASCII character set into the second and third characters.

There four types of characters:

  1. Reserved characters
  2. Unsafe characters
  3. ASCII control characters
  4. Non-ASCII control characters

This article covers the first and second types of characters in the list. The third one and fourth one are off topic. If you are interested in those refer to this article .

There are some characters that need to be encoded because in the URLs they  can have different meanings. We call them Reserved characters. There is a list of reserved characters and their meanings below:

%24 : $

%26 : &

%2B : +

%2C : ,

%2F : /

%3A : :

%3B : ;

%3D : =

%3F : ?

%40 : @

There are some characters like space, quotation marks, less than symbol, greater than symbol, pound character, percent character, Left Curly Brace, Right Curly Brace , Pipe, Backslash, Caret, Tilde, Left Square Bracket , Right Square Bracket, Grave Accent that may be misunderstood in URLs. So they need to be encoded as well. We call these type of characters as Unsafe Characters.

There is a list of unsafe characters and their meanings below:

%20 : space

%7B : {

%7C : |

%7D : }

%7E : ~

%3C : <

%3E : >

%5C : \

%5E : ^

%5F : _


%22 :

%25 : %

%2D :

%2E : .


I hope you enjoyed it.


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