Oracle: IMP-00038: Could not convert to environment character set’s handle

Developer gave me a dumpfile named “somename.dmp” to import it into his dev-schema. As he didn’t made the dump himself, he could not tell me if this is a “traditional” dump or a DataPump-Dump.

Trying to import it with the old import-tool I got this error:

IMP-00038: Could not convert to environment character set's handle

At first I was a little puzzled. Thinking about what possible platforms are used in this company and that I read something about the platform-independency of Oracle-Dumpfiles…

But then I just tried to import the dump with DataPump and all was fine. This is another example for a misleading Oracle errormessage… And this is also, why I don’t like the fact, that Oracle didn’t changed the recommended fileextension for DataPump-Dumps. Everyone still uses the familiar “.dmp”-extension. To distinguish my DataPump-Dumps from old-style dumps, I am accustomed to name them with “.dpdmp”.