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How to Handle PHPMyAdmin Error #1273 – Unknown Collation: ‚utf8mb4_unicode_520_ci‘

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I recently migrated a database from one server to another. I cannot properly tell which server was newer. BUt I guess it is the source server. Unfortunately the exported MySQL-Database had a collation type the other older MySQL Server could not recognize which prevented a proper import.

Fortunately the solution is rather easy. DO some quick search and replace commands on the exported .sql file (open in ATOM Editor if it is too big):

  1. Search: utf8mb4_unicode_ci 
    Replace: utf8_general_ci (Replace All)
  2. Search: utf8mb4_unicode_520_ci 
    Replace: utf8_general_ci (Replace All)
  3. Search: utf8mb4 
    Replace: utf8 (Replace All)


When you manually import a foreign database. Make sure that the table prefix defined in the wp-config.php file matches the imported prefix! Often this is not the case. When restoring using a backup tool this migh be fixed automatically.

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