Converter for Zarnegar Encoding and File Format to Unicode Text Files
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Converter for Zarnegar Encoding and File Format to Unicode Text


Zarnegar (Persian: زرنگار, zarnegār, meaning gold-depicting) is a commercial, stand-alone Persian/Arabic word processor program developed for MS-DOS and Windows. The first version of Zarnegar (for DOS), was released in April-May 1991, and Windows versions have been available since 2000.

Zarnegar has employed two different character sets and file formats.

Zarnegar1 Character Set

Zarnegar used an Iran System-based character encoding system, named Zarnegar1, with text file formats for its early versions, up to its "Zarnegar 75" version. Zarnegar1 character set is a 2-form left-to-right visual encoding, meaning the every Perso-Arabic letter receives different character codes based on its cursive joining form, but most letters receive only 2 forms, because of the limited code-points available2 forms, because of the limited code-points available.

This project has a partial implementation of Zarnegar1 encoding (zarnegar_converter/ and a full implementation of its binary and text file formats (zarnegar_converter/

Zarnegar75 Character Set

With "Zarnegar 75" version of the program, a new character encoding system was introduced, and the file format was changed to another binary format. Zarnegar75 character set is a 4-form bidirectional encoding, meaning that every Perso-Arabic letter receives one, two, or four character code, depending on its cursive joining form, and these letters are stored in the memory in the semantic order.

Support for Zarnegar75 file format and encoding is still in progress.

How to Use

$ ./src/ unicode_legacy_lro samples/zar1-sample-text-01.zar
‭                                                          ﻡﺎﯾﺧ ﺕﺎﯾﻋﺎﺑﺭ ﻩﺭﺎﺑﺭﺩ |
‭                                                            ﯽﻧﭘﺍﮊ ﺭﻌﺷ ﺭﺩ ﻭﮐﯾﺎﻫ |

How to Contribute

Please report any issues at <> or submit GitHub pull requests.

The encoding mappings (both Zarnegar1 and Zarnegar75) can be improved with access to more sample files. Please write to <> if you like to contribute (private or public) Zarnegar source files to improve this project.


Thanks to Cecil H. Green Library of Stanford University, specially John A Eilts and Behzad Allahyar, for sharing their collection of Zarnegar documents.

Also thanks to The Official Website of Ahmad Shamlou for sharing their collection of documents.

Legal Notice

Zarnegar is a trademark of SinaSoft Corporation. This project is NOT affiliated with SinaSoft Corporation.

Copyright (C) 2017 Behnam Esfahbod

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.