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So in D it's impossible to work with files if their filename is not Unicode?

Rather it would be an error to grab a Unix filename, figure your job was done, and store it directly into a string. So you'd... handle things correctly. Somehow. I admit I've never had the bad luck of encountering a non-UTF8 encoded filename under Linux before and can't claim with any confidence that my code would handle it gracefully. In any language, assuming you're using the standard library facilities it provides things will hopefully mostly be taken care of behind the scenes anyway.

What I like about the D approach isn't that declaring it an error actually solves anything directly (obviously it doesn't) but that it removes any ambiguity about how things are expected to work. If the encoding of strings isn't well defined, then if you're writing a library which encodings are the users going to expect you to accept? Or worse, which encodings does that minimally documented library function you're about to call accept?

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