:: Version 2.7.0 ::

How to translate


In iTop and iTop modules, a language is identified by two things:

  • The ISO 639-1 language code. Example: pt for Portuguese.
  • The ISO country code. Example: br for Brazil.

Localization relies on dictionary files, which names are prefixed with the language code in lowercase, like : pt_br.dictionary.itop.core.php. Those files are part of the datamodel, so a compilation is needed after each modification (run the setup again or use the toolkit).

In iTop, the embedded dictionnaries are located in :

  • <itop-root>/dictionaries/
  • <itop-root>/datamodels/2.x/<module>/

In modules, thoses files are located in the module's root directory.

Dictionary file format

A dictionary is in fact a PHP file. It must be encoded in the utf-8 character set (this is a MUST). We recommend that the PHP closing tag be omitted as in the example given below.

 * Localized data
 * @copyright   Copyright (C) 2015 John Foo Ltd
 * @author      John Foo (john@foo.com)
 * @license     http://opensource.org/licenses/AGPL-3.0

Dict::Add('PT BR', 'Brazilian', 'Portuguese', array(
        'Menu:ChangeManagement' => 'Gerenciamento Mudanças',
        'Menu:Change:Overview' => 'Visão geral',
        'Menu:NewChange' => 'New Change~~',


  • The first parameter of the function call is the language code in uppercase.
  • The second parameter of the function call is the language name in english.
  • The third parameter of the function call is the language name in the target language.
  • The line Dict::Add must be the same amongst all the dictionnary files for the same language (yes, there are redundant information here).
  • Notice the ~~ at the end of some strings. This suffix is not displayed to the end-user. It is added by Combodo when releasing a new version, revealing which new strings requires a translation.

Some generic rules

  • keep consistency : re-use already translated terms (form example “manager” is a word used in many keys)
  • you can keep english terms if they are more understandable in the context
  • try not to use formulations that are too familiar : iTop is a product used both by companies and its clients
  • use camel case for class names
  • there are standards for datamodel items : Class:<classname>, Class:<classname>/Attribute:<fieldname>. For example : Class:Ticket, Class:Ticket/Attribute:ref, Class:UserRequest/Attribute:status/Value:new
  • if you want to translate a field label, do it for the class where the field is defined, and not in child classes. Example : ok for Class:Ticket/Attribute:ref but not Class:Change/Attribute:ref. If you need the later, then just add it to your iTop instance using a customization module.
  • Try not to mention classes in action labels for generic users. This can be done for admin users though. If using a class label, capitalize it : eg Notification instead of notitication.

Dictionary key naming convention

A new entry should be named after its domain and purpose, starting with the less specific information.

The most commonly used separator is ':' but '/' and '-' could also be found.

'Core:BulkExport:TextFormat' => 'Text fields containing some HTML markup',
'UI:CSVImport:TextQualifierCharacter' => 'Text qualifier character',
'DayOfWeek-Sunday-Min' => 'Su',

Use suffixes to define variations of the same label :

  • '+' means a short description (to be shown in a tooltip most of the time)
  • '?' means help / explanations (could fit on several lines)
'Core:SynchroAtt:update' => 'Update ?',
'Core:SynchroAtt:update+' => 'Used to update the object',
'UI:CSVImport:AdvancedMode' => 'Advanced mode',
'UI:CSVImport:AdvancedMode+' => 
  'In advanced mode the "id" (primary key) of the objects can be used to update and rename objects.'
  .'However the column "id" (if present) can only be used as a search criteria'
  .' and can not be combined with any other search criteria.',

When a naming convention is established, then the identifiers should be specified as <name>:<value>, like in the following example:

'Class:Event/Attribute:date' => 'Date',
'Class:Event/Attribute:date+' => 'date and time at which the changes have been recorded',

Note that, in this case, the separator should be '/'.

How to contribute to improve an existing language

You'll have to create a fork from iTop main repository or the corresponding module repository, then do your modifications and propose them using a pull request : see the CONTRIBUTING.md file in the repo you're modifying for details.

A detailed procedure on pull request model is available in the GitHub help pages : Creating a pull request from a fork.

To add translations to an existing language : look for (grep) the ~~ and translate them in place.

Here is a quick Linux command line to find all dictionary entries (of the German (=de) language) with the ~~ tag:
find -name "de*dict*.php" | grep -v "env-" | xargs grep "~~"

Simply change de* in the command above by the language code you want to process (fr, it, sp…) and launch this command from the directory where you installed iTop.

To add translations for a new language : find out your language code and country code. Copy the english files (either dictionary.*.php or en.dict.*.php) into their respective directory, with the relevant prefix (like in pt_br.dict…). Translate them.

Do not forget to change the parameters of the Dict::Add function calls. Failing to do so will overwrite (at runtime) the english texts with yours.

The pull request will then be analyzed by Combodo maintainers, and eventually merged into the original repository.

2_7_0/customization/translation.txt · Last modified: 2020/12/22 17:40 (external edit)
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