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Localisation guideline for unaltered texts

Localisation guidelines does not specify whether or not to translate texts that are not changed from the fallback language. Should we better do so, or shall we better leave them alone? Or does the best choice depend on something, e.g. not translate more technical stuff like "project:Babel" or accesskey-x-y-z, and do translate real language texts since we are not sure whether or not the fallback translation may be changed to something we cannot use any more? --Purodha Blissenbach 11:27, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Usually a fallback is a way to make things slightly less inconvenient if there is no full localisation for a certain language. All fallbacks lead to English if there is no alternative in the fall back chain. My opinion is that all non-optional messages should have a localisation in any language. There are a few exceptions, f.e. if a whole language code falls back (zh->zh-hans, als->gsw), in which case there should be no localisations at all, and in the case of de-formal, where only affected messages are to be localised. Siebrand 13:54, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
Fully agreed with the exceptions.
A note on using fallbacks filling gaps in translations. There are occasions where two or more localisations could be mutual fallbacks of each other,
  • such as dialects of a macrolanguage (e.g. the two main serbian ones; or our varieties nds, and nds-NL; or the yet to be created Ripuarian varieties) or
  • differently scripted versions (e.g. sr-Latn and sr-Cyrl, and several more).
Currently, we do not have a way to reflect this "mutuality" in the software. We only have straight fallback chains - put more precisely, we descend trees, from some branch node strictly towards the root (English) - and we cut the process after 5 steps, so as to avoid loops.
I'd like thoughts and feedback about the idea to make this more flexible, while at the same time retaining or even enhancing a strict limitation of processing time. --Purodha Blissenbach 09:25, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
I don't think it's agood idea to have a fallback between two differently scripted versions even if it's the same language. The fallback may not be readable, and it's notreally posssible to say which version is the default one (is it Cyrillic or Latin for Serbian?)
On the opposite, the Serbo-Croatian (Latin) mixed language (srh) can be a valid fallback for Serbia-Latin, Croatian-Latin, and Bosnian-Latin. The same is true between generic Norwegian (no) which can be a valid fallback for Bokmål/Riksmal (nb) and Nynorsk (nn) because they share the dame script, and a very good mutual understanding (and a large comon vocabulary).
As well, generic Chinese (zh) is probably the same as simplified Chinese (zh-hans) used in PRC and Singapore (these regianal variants, if needed shoud used zh-hans as their fallback), but is a valid fallback for other Chinese variants (including Traditional Chinese zh-Hant, that has at least three minor variants for Hong Kong, PRC Cantonese, and Taiwanese; it's not simple to determine if the Hong Kong dialect or Taiwan dialect is the default, both will use zh-hant, but if needed zh-HK and zh-TW may use zh-hant as a valid fallback and specify translations only where this makes a difference from a common default; when it's not possible to determine which of the two minor variants is the default one, both minor variants should specify the value, even if one is equal to the one specifed in the default fallback zh-hant).
Verdy p 14:52, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

WikiAdmin e-mail

maybe it's just me ;), however, it seems mailing system has a small error with url. Example (part of e-mail):

The Betawiki page MediaWiki:Ipb already blocked/hr has been changed on
18:15, 6 June 2008 by FuzzyBot, see
http://localhost/wiki/MediaWiki:Ipb_already_blocked/hr for the current

this is e-mail about changes for article on watchlist, if i'm not mistaken, there should be instead localhost. --Dalibor Bosits 21:29, 6 June 2008 (UTC)

Yeah, it's crap. Go kick Niklas :) Siebrand 19:37, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

New i18n related bugs in Mediazilla

  • bug 14434 — MediaWiki:categoriespagetext should offer links to Special:UnusedCategories, and possibly Special:WantedCategories
  • bug 14438 — int:sitesupport, int:sitesupport-url not updated from svn version of MessagesKsh.php
  • bug 14454 — "Member of group(s)" in Special:Preferences
  • bug 14455 — Invitation e-mail subject to be translated.

Please voice your opinions, and vote for the bugs. --Purodha Blissenbach 23:10, 6 June 2008 (UTC)

MediaWiki talk:Bw-mainpage-intro-text

I suggest to add a link to the extension page such as

provided by an [[mw:Extension:Translate|extension]]

to the message. I tried it in the ksh translation, it seems to work and looks good. --Purodha 20:09, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

I have no idea what you want to change or accomplish. Please elaborate. Siebrand 19:37, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

MediaWiki talk:Babel-desc

Suggestion: the text "babel userbox column" could be a link to [[int:babel-url]] --Purodha Blissenbach 18:44, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

I don't think that this makes much sense, MediaWiki:babel-url has nothing to do with "babel userbox column". MinuteElectron 19:55, 9 June 2008 (UTC)


* Generally available special pages.
* <span class="mw-specialpagerestricted">Restricted special pages.</span>

by: Sp5uhe

Not done. Too minor a change to fuzzy everything. Siebrand 19:32, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

Deletedcontributions ("Deleted user contributions")

Deleted contributions

by: Meno25

I disagree. The current description is accurate and does not require change. Siebrand 00:26, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

Centralauth-prefs-count-attached ("Your account is active on $1 wikis.")

Does "active" here refer to whether the user has made contributions at those sites, or whether the account is enabled there? – Minh Nguyễn (talk, contribs) 07:15, 30 January 2008 (UTC)

The latter. "A present user, not necessarily with contributions" Siebrand 00:24, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

Renamed messages

The message MediaWiki:Missingarticle/ksh was missingarticle deleted from MessagesKsh.php some days ago. Today, I accidentally find an untranslated message MediaWiki:Missing-article/ksh which, it seems, is exactly the previously deleted one. That means, it actually has been renamed, but the process of renaming did not reach the translation to ksh. That is imho not a good idea. I would not know of one, but imho there should be a way to semi-automatize a task like this. (-: I prefer not be bothered with re-entering messages after incomplete renames :-) --Purodha Blissenbach 19:20, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

It looks like you missed a $2 in your translation. Siebrand 20:26, 10 June 2008 (UTC)
I did. My apologies, the messages were look-alikes, but different. :-( --Purodha Blissenbach 02:47, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

Stabilization-tab ("vet")

I was wondering what "vet" in MediaWiki:Stabilization-tab means. I am trying to translate it into Esperanto. Some other languages have:

  • Spanish: vetar (which seems like the English word "veto")
  • French: (aq) (which I have no idea what that's an abbreviation for)
  • Portuguese: cgq (again, an abbreviation... no idea)
  • Russian: (кк) (again, an abbreviation.)
  • Dutch: (er)

What in the heck does this mean? :-) -- Yekrats 13:45, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

For localisation it is a stupid word[1]: to appraise, verify, or check for accuracy, authenticity, validity, etc.: An expert vetted the manuscript before publication. Siebrand 14:21, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

Suppress ("Suppress")

What this message means? Is it action or person? --EugeneZelenko 14:09, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

Is a action! M.M.S. 15:23, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

"Oversight" is the process or action that enables you to completely suppress versions or log entries from sight. Not even sysops can then see the versions that have been taken out of sight. Siebrand 17:42, 12 June 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for help! However will be good idea to reflect this in message documentation. --EugeneZelenko 14:02, 13 June 2008 (UTC)

A bit fuzzy on FUZZY!!

I just scanned a few translations marked "fuzzy." But the translations look fine to me. Where can I find the former English text to compare and see what changed? I'd like to double-check myself and make sure I'm not missing something (hopefully) subtle. I tried looking at the main entry (without the / and the language code), but all I see is a deletion log with the text available only to sysops. Thanks, Snakesteuben 12:46, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Without letting us know which messages you checked, there is hardly anything we can do for you. Please try to be as detailed as possible when asking for help. Cheers! Siebrand 08:27, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
I think, the question was very clear: Where can I find the former English text to compare and see what changed?
But I guess, Siebrand is indicating, that the answer is: Nowhere. (At least not on Betawiki.)
You could try to look for the changes in the diff links on [2], but it can be hard to find the exact corresponding diff for an change, if the summary line does not mention the message name. --::Slomox:: >< 13:19, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

Babel extension bugs

Hi Minuteelectron.

  1. Babel.css does not load from server. My suggestion: add MediaWiki:Babel.css for customisation output by CSS
  2. Following messages content and option should changed to default values (else sysops spend many time for understanding why is Category:En-3 tough expected at least Category:User en-3):
'babel-category-prefix' => 'User_', # only translate this message to other languages if you have to change it
'babel-template-prefix' => 'User_', # only translate this message to other languages if you have to change it

--AlefZet 23:07, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

  1. See the message in the header of Babel.css - it is intended for copying to MediaWiki:Common.css rather than being loaded directly, this ensure customizability and reduces uneeded extension code.
Not reason for increasing regular MediaWiki:Common.css or MediaWiki:Monobook.css that already very HUGE on live wikies. It is appears silly.--AlefZet 11:45, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
  1. I don't think this is very sensible, it means that it has to be translated and if the wiki changes content language things will break. The message itself is documented on the extension page thoroughly so confusion should not be an issue.
MinuteElectron 20:42, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
It breaks normal rendering of the categories like Category:User en-3 today and now. About 50-100 languages used to Babel with 6 levels in sum it is 300-600 categories. You propose change 600 categories? :D Any extension should work normally without any settings maden by SysOps or settings per wiki maden by shell admins. Else that extension should withdrawn. I not imagine Tim Starling settig User_ translation for each wiki :D)) --AlefZet 11:45, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
There are no settings which need to be altered by shell admins to get the features you request, please note that the likelyhood of Babel being enabled on Wikimedia wikis is negligible anyway. Adding a MediaWiki:Babel.css page would not improve the situation in any way either, it would be more efficient to automatically add the default code, and then this be altered by MediaWiki:Common.css - either way this feature is simply a workaround and adding the code to MediaWiki:Common.css is very easy. Also Sysops are free to change the category prefix, saying that 600 categories would need changing is incorrect. MinuteElectron 21:06, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

Typo in Msg MultipleCats

There is a typo in this message. Seperate --> Separate --Meno25 21:57, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

Done Done Siebrand 10:46, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

Typo in Cologneblue.css ("/* All CSS here will be loaded for users of the Cologne Blue skin */") and Cologneblue.js ("/* All JavaScript here will be loaded for users of the Cologne Blue skin */")

These messages say "Bologne blue skin", not "Cologne blue skin". /Lejonel 10:37, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

Done Done Siebrand 10:45, 17 June 2008 (UTC)

Some problem with language mhr

I can't find mhr in language combobox in my preferences/user profile. When I registered this language was there. And I had set it up as the interface language. Recently I have changed it to ru. And now I can't change it back because it had disapeared. Please, help me.Сай 16:32, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

Does anyone know what should I do to change my language to mhr? There is no mhr in language list, but I can make translations on it. It is not comfortable to translate interface without being able to see the result of translation.Сай 07:50, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

There something must be wrong, because i also do not see mhr in languages list, in user preferences. -yyy 09:29, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Local modification was lost in the update. Should work again. – Nike 09:39, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
At the moment it is not working yet.Сай 10:51, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

require sysop access

Hi. May I have sysop access in betawiki? I want to take a more active part here and check my translation in administrative environment. cheers!.Mostafa 00:22, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Done Done Siebrand 07:53, 25 June 2008 (UTC)


Could somebody please add descriptions for MediaWiki:checkuser-log-userips, MediaWiki:checkuser-log-ipedits, MediaWiki:checkuser-log-ipusers, MediaWiki:checkuser-log-ipedits-xff, MediaWiki:checkuser-log-ipusers-xff? I really would like to know what exactly $1 and $2 are saying in the final message. I really don't understand the purpose and I have no access to CheckUser forms. --::Slomox:: >< 13:44, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanks to Lejonel for the description. --::Slomox:: >< 17:38, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

Translatable groupnames

Can it be possible to translate the names for messagegroups, here is a example for Swedish:

MediaWiki messages  =>  MediaWiki-meddelanden
All extension       =>  Alla tillägg

M.M.S. 10:12, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I don't understand who would benefit from it. Most of them are proper names anyway. – Nike 10:36, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Untranslated messages

I've translated a lot of messages for nds-nl. When I go to the translation tool and select the first option (MediaWiki 1.12) 1414 messages appear as untranslated, when I click on the link, they are translated, how do I know what to translate? Servien 17:39, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

I think I have fixed the bug now. Thanks for repoting. – Nike 19:41, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Where is uselang=debug gone?

Some time ago, there was a question asked here about how to find the names of messages given a page where they appear. The answer was uselang=debug in the URL, which I could see working. Now it is gone again. What to do? --Purodha Blissenbach 17:44, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Works only in sandwiki. – Nike 19:41, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Using of grammatical cases in MediaWiki:Babel extension for Old Church Slavonic

How can I use Instrumental case in language name? As default it shows "Словѣньскъ" (the language name in Nominative case) but it should be "словѣ́ньскꙑ" (Instrumental case). ОйЛ 14:49, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm afraid this is not possible due to the way language names are translated. However, if you translate all the Babel messages (specifically the babel-x-n ones) you will be able to use the instrumental case in them. MinuteElectron 19:53, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

Message lost?

See this diff, there is one deletion after line 1918, of the line saying:

 'widthheight'  => '$1×$2',

I am 100% sure that only minutes ago, I altered widthheight to "$1×$2", I did not delete it. Now, where is it gone? It does not seem to have been moved elsewhere, at least I couldn't find it; and it seems hard to believe that it was deleted from the messages base in general. --Purodha Blissenbach 10:20, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

Messages equal to that in MessagesEn.php and not present as page in Betawiki are removed from source files. In those cases fallback will take care of showing the proper message. If a message is optional, and present as page, it is ignore on export. I think the latter is the case here. Siebrand 12:28, 10 June 2008 (UTC)
This is imho inconsistent with the initial two paragraphs of #Localisation guideline for unaltered texts above. If a message is not changed from English, and another language being an in-between fallback, later changes it, the translation is possibly broken. This is likely not the case with this special one, since its effectively of language codes mul or maybe zxx, since it is only figures and a symbol. But in general, we cannot rely on handing messages along a fallback chain, can we? Or else, am I missing something? --Purodha Blissenbach 19:20, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

Error in Template New portal

Likely, there is an error in the template:New portal. I tried to find it, in vain. The page Portal:Ksh is in category:Languages with a Wiktionary project which is wrong. --Purodha Blissenbach 16:31, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I fixed it; it was missing an }. Jon Harald Søby 19:54, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
Thank you! --Purodha Blissenbach 22:27, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

== Delete-toobig ("This page has a large edit history, over $1 revisions. Deletion of such pages has been restricted to prevent accidental disruption of"), Delete-warning-toobig ("This page has a large edit history, over $1 revisions. Deleting it may disrupt database operations of; proceed with caution.") should use PLURAL == For $1 revision/revisions. --EugeneZelenko 14:10, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

Added to list. Siebrand 08:48, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

sharedupload messages problems

Currently sentences from Shareduploadwiki-desc ("The description on its $1 there is shown below."), Shareduploadduplicate ("This file is a duplicate of $1 from shared repository."), Shareduploadconflict ("This file has the same name as $1 from the shared repository.") are split on 2 parts. They include Shareduploadduplicate-linktext ("another file"), Shareduploadwiki-linktext ("file description page"), Shareduploadconflict-linktext ("another file"). It's very hard to guess how to translate such broken sentences with correct grammar case.

I think mentioned messages should monolithic sentences and accept only links as parameter. In this case will be more easy to make correct translation and also simplify translators life :-) EugeneZelenko 14:44, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

Added to list. Siebrand 08:48, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Lqt youhavenewmessages ("You have new messages.")

Plz change this to a full sentence because this in combination with $1 in german the text gets strange

by: DaSch

Added to the list. Siebrand 08:48, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Problem in disambiguations-text message

Hi. Can somebody write something about this message (disambiguations-text) specially about changing this link ([[MediaWiki:Disambiguationspage]]). As I checked this link appears as problematic link.Mostafa 14:53, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I cannot tell. why the "problematic link" warning appears. Otherwise, I gave it a try, MediaWiki:disambiguations-text/qqq --Purodha Blissenbach 20:16, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I will work on to improve the warnings, just please give me some time. – Nike 20:23, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Niuean (niu)

Hi, I cannot find Niuean (niu) on the My Preferences language list. Could someone add it in please? Thanks. --Jose77 08:55, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

The same problem with Eastern Mari(mhr). Сай 08:05, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Request it at Translating:Tasks#Open Issues. SPQRobin 11:39, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Undelete ("View deleted pages")

When undeleting a page, the fieldset around Restore/Reset buttons has a legend that says "View deleted pages" (MediaWiki:Undelete). These buttons have nothing to do with viewing, so the legend should be changed to something like "Restore revisions". - AlexSm 04:09, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Done Done Thanks. Siebrand 12:46, 5 July 2008 (UTC)

Post-expand-template-inclusion-category ("Pages where template include size is exceeded")

'Pages where template include size is exceeded'. What does this mean and where does it occur? Is it the template that's too big or a parameter or the page or what? It's a mystery! Lloffiwr 18:44, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

when templates are expanded, there is a size limit for the number of bytes (or characters?) yielded. Usually that occurs from excessively nested templates, recursive templates, or ones having x-zillion of #if #case or similar contructs in them. When the wikicode parser detects this, it outputs a red warning message to the page. Likely the pages are meant, where the current/last cached version has this error. --Purodha Blissenbach 23:37, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
I added the above explanation to the corresponding /qqq. Thanks Purodha. Siebrand 12:50, 5 July 2008 (UTC)

edit previous / next

Many many thanks and big hugs for the "edit next / edit previous / return to list" links! Wow, what a brilliant addition! --Purodha Blissenbach 23:28, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

it took a lot of whining :) Big cheers to Niklas. Siebrand 07:24, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

autodetecting unbalanced html tags?

Is there a chance to include detection of errors like the one corrected here in automated html-sanity checks? --Purodha Blissenbach 23:31, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

I'll try. – Nike 07:33, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Problem in message

Hi. I don't understand what the problem is in message MediaWiki:Disambiguations-text/vo. Could you guys please tell me? Thanks, Malafaya 11:18, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

Support#Problem_in_disambiguations-text_messageNike 11:31, 3 July 2008 (UTC)
Sorry for not having seen it :(. I suppose there is no problem. I'll wait on the improved warning. Thanks, Malafaya 12:19, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

Localized edit buttons for be-tarask

Thanks to Nike for implementing bugzilla:11732! Could you please include localized image for be-tarask?

However images should be renamed to from be to be-tarask for consistency.

EugeneZelenko 14:52, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Are these only for be-tarask, or can other cyrillic scripts use these? – Nike 16:01, 4 July 2008 (UTC)
Only for be-tarask. Other languages will be different. --EugeneZelenko 16:25, 4 July 2008 (UTC)
Added.--Alnokta 21:36, 4 July 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for help! --EugeneZelenko 15:12, 5 July 2008 (UTC)