Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

All emails sent from the server are displaying Cyrillic letters as weird characters, for example: Можно.

Regular alphabet letters are properly rendered.

I searched all across the web but was not able to find any solutions.

Here is some information about the system:

  • Dedicated server with Windows 2008 and IIS7
  • Application are in PHP (run as FastCGI)
  • If of any importance, Smartermail is installed on the server

The emails are sent using PHPs mail() function through a Drupal website. Encoding on that site is set up properly and there are no display issues on front end.

Where is the problem? How can I make Cyrillic letters to be properly encoded?
Any help is greatly appreciated.



Here are the email headers:

Received: from SERVERNAME ( []) by with SMTP; Fri, 16 Nov 2012 00:00:00 +0100
Subject: Email subject
Date: Fri, 16 Nov 2012 00:00:00 +0100
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain;
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
X-Mailer: Drupal
Message-ID: f98b801988c642ef911ef46f7cace92b@com
X-SmarterMail-Spam: SPF_None, ISpamAssassin 8 [raw: 5], DK_None, DKIM_None, Custom Rules [] X-SmarterMail-TotalSpamWeight: 8

share|improve this question
Ivan, you need to provide more information about your setup, configuration and environment for us to even understand what problem you are having. – Brent Pabst Nov 16 '12 at 17:33
Thanks for your comment Brent :) I updated my post. Let me know if I should post some other information as well. – Aram Boyajyan Nov 16 '12 at 21:23
No, a little more is needed, what is sending the messages, how are they actually being sent, etc. – Brent Pabst Nov 16 '12 at 21:35
Thanks again - I added more info to the answer. – Aram Boyajyan Nov 16 '12 at 21:43
Add that broken message headers to the question, it is impossible to guess correctly otherwise. – Andrey Voitenkov Nov 16 '12 at 21:57

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.