This section describes how to support native language support in a program or library that is part of the PostgreSQL distribution. Currently, it only applies to C programs.
Adding NLS support to a program
Insert this code into the start-up sequence of the program:
#ifdef ENABLE_NLS #include <locale.h> #endif ... #ifdef ENABLE_NLS setlocale(LC_ALL, ""); bindtextdomain("progname", LOCALEDIR); textdomain("progname"); #endif
(The progname can actually be chosen freely.)
Wherever a message that is a candidate for translation
is found, a call to
needs to be inserted. E.g.,
fprintf(stderr, "panic level %d\n", lvl);
would be changed to
fprintf(stderr, gettext("panic level %d\n"), lvl);
(gettext is defined as a no-op if no NLS is configured.)
This may tend to add a lot of clutter. One common shortcut is to
#define _(x) gettext((x))
Another solution is feasible if the program does much of
its communication through one or a few functions, such as
elog() in the backend. Then
you make this function call
gettext internally on all input
Add a file nls.mk in the directory with the program sources. This file will be read as a makefile. The following variable assignments need to be made here:
The program name, as provided in the
List of provided translations -- empty in the beginning.
List of files that contain translatable strings,
i.e., those marked with
gettext or an alternative solution.
Eventually, this will include nearly all source files
of the program. If this list gets too long you can
make the first "file" be a
+ and the second word be a
file that contains one file name per line.
The tools that generate message catalogs for the
translators to work on need to know what function
calls contain translatable strings. By default, only
gettext() calls are
known. If you used
other identifiers you need to list them here. If the
translatable string is not the first argument, the
item needs to be of the form func:2 (for the second argument).
The build system will automatically take care of building and installing the message catalogs.
To ease the translation of messages, here are some guidelines:
Do not construct sentences at run-time out of laziness, like
printf("Files where %s.\n", flag ? "copied" : "removed");
The word order within the sentence may be different in other languages.
For similar reasons, this won't work:
printf("copied %d file%s", n, n!=1 ? "s" : "");
because it assumes how the plural is formed. If you figured you could solve it like this
if (n==1) printf("copied 1 file"); else printf("copied %d files", n):
then be disappointed. Some languages have more than two forms, with some peculiar rules. We may have a solution for this in the future, but for now this is best avoided altogether. You could write:
printf("number of copied files: %d", n);
If you want to communicate something to the translator, such as about how a message is intended to line up with other output, precede the occurrence of the string with a comment that starts with translator, e.g.,
/* translator: This message is not what it seems to be. */
These comments are copied to the message catalog files so that the translators can see them.