Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Oracle Linux - Base64 encoding

Base64 is a group of similar binary-to-text encoding schemes that represent binary data in an ASCII string format by translating it into a radix-64 representation. The term Base64 originates from a specific MIME content transfer encoding. For all clarity, Base64 encoding is NOT encryption and it will not make your message or data secure. However, a lot of good use cases for using a Base64 encoding exist and you will come across them frequently.

When working with Base64 encoded data (files, strings, etc) while developing scripting in Bash requires you to understand the basics of how to handle it. Under Oracle Linux the most common way is using the base64 command.

As an example, we have a string which we do want to apply base64 encoding on:

[vagrant@consul-dc2 tmp]$ echo "this is a clear text" | base64
[vagrant@consul-dc2 tmp]$ 

In the above example you will see that the clear text string is transformed into a base64 encoded string.

As an example, we have the base64 encoded string from the previous example and we want to decode this to clear text:

[vagrant@consul-dc2 tmp]$ echo "dGhpcyBpcyBhIGNsZWFyIHRleHQK" | base64 --decode
this is a clear text
[vagrant@consul-dc2 tmp]$

This, in effect, is all you have to do do handle base64 encoding under Oracle Linux.

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