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TRANSLATING VIM MESSAGES In this directory you will find xx.po files, where "xx" is a language code. Each file contains the translation of English Vim messages for one language. The files are in "po" format, used by the gettext package. Please refer to the gettext documentation for more information. The GNU gettext library, starting with version 0.10.37, supports converting messages from one encoding to another. This requires that it was compiled with HAVE_ICONV. The result is that the messages may be in any encoding supported by iconv and will be automatically converted to the currently used encoding. The GNU gettext library, starting with version 0.10.36, uses a new format for some encodings. This follows the C99 standard for strings. It means that when a multi-byte character includes the 0x5c byte, this is not recognized as a backslash. Since this format is incompatible with Solaris, Vim uses the old format. This is done by setting the OLD_PO_FILE_OUTPUT and OLD_PO_FILE_INPUT environment variables. When you use the Makefile in this directory that will be done for you. This does NOT work with gettext 0.10.36. Don't use it, get 0.10.37. ON MS-WINDOWS The distributed files are generated on Unix, but this should also be possible on MS-Windows. Download the gettext packages, for example from: http://sourceforge.net/projects/gettext You might have to do the commands manually. Example: cd c:\vim\vim71 mkdir runtime\lang\ja\LC_MESSAGES msgfmt -o runtime\lang\ja\LC_MESSAGES\vim.mo src\po\ja.po WHEN THERE IS A MISTAKE If you find there is a mistake in one of the translations, please report this to the maintainer of the translation. His/her E-mail address is in the comments at the start of the file. You can also see this with the ":messages" command in Vim when the translation is being used. CREATING A NEW PO FILE We will use "xx.po" as an example here, replace "xx" with the name of your language. - Edit Makefile to add xx to LANGUAGES and xx.mo to MOFILES. - Copy the header of an existing file, e.g., de.po, to xx.po. Do not copy any of the translated messages, delete everything after the "msgstr". - The remaining work is like updating, see the next section. UPDATING A PO FILE If you are the maintainer of a .po file, this is how you update the file. We will use "xx.po" as an example here, replace "xx" with the name of your language. (1) Add new and changed messages from the Vim sources: make xx This will extract all the strings from Vim and merge them in with the existing translations. Requires the GNU gettext utilities. Also requires unpacking the extra archive. Your original xx.po file will be copied to xx.po.orig -- After you do this, you MUST do the next three steps! -- (2) Translate See the gettext documentation on how to do this. You can also find examples in the other po files. Search the po file for items that require translation: /fuzzy\|^msgstr ""\(\n"\)\@! Remove the "#, fuzzy" line after adding the translation. There is one special message: msgid "Messages maintainer: Bram Moolenaar <Bram@vim.org>" You should include your name and E-mail address instead, for example: msgstr "Berichten übersetzt bei: John Doe <firstname.lastname@example.org>" (3) Clean up This is very important to make sure the translation works on all systems. Comment-out all non-translated strings. There are two types: - items marked with "#, fuzzy" - items with an empty msgstr You can do this with the cleanup.vim script: :source cleanup.vim Background: on Solaris an empty msgstr results in an empty message; GNU gettext ignores empty strings and items marked with "#, fuzzy". This also removes the line numbers from the file, so that patches are not messed up by changes in line numbers and show the actual changes in the text. (4) Check: vim -S check.vim xx.po make xx.mo Look out for syntax errors and fix them.