Translating the Gramps User manual

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Please update or expand this section.

The user manual

is also available from within Gramps using the F1 key (which opens this manual in a browser window), or from the help menu.

An explanation of how you can translate the Gramps User manual.

Getting started

Translating Gramps' documentation into a new language is a worthwhile process and the Gramps team thanks you.

Since Gramps version 3.0 the documentation was moved completely to this wiki. So for translation you don't need to use or even install any fancy applications to help us. You can use your browser and start immediately. Just go to the User manual page, select the current manual and then click on your language. You should could keep the English manual open to check if there is a help page missing.

The general wiki help page will help you editing wiki pages. This wiki uses the MediaWiki software, which is the same that is used by Wikipedia, so it could feel familiar.



Recommended that when updating any of the user manuals:

  • Use Gramps localized in that language as a reference and do not simply guess the words. Verify your translated text actually matches what the user will see in the standard localized Gramps installation.
  • If the localized interface has a typo or incorrect translation, document the EXISTING interface. Do not mislead the user into expecting something else. They might waste time searching for an non-existent update.
  • Do not have any third party addons loaded. Use a vanilla version of Gramps unless documenting that particular addon.
  • Also, preferably use a fresh copy of the Example.gramps family tree for any screenshots in your preferred language.

Handling of Translations Errors

Translation errors, typos and revisions are inevitable.

It is important that documentation describe software as it currently exists... not as it should be in a perfect world.

That acknowledgment of a localization problem in the wiki doesn't mean that the problem cannot or will not be fixed. Rather than patch the problem in documentation, file a translation bug report, see How to report bugs. A good bug report will also include a link to the wiki page that will need to be revised. The wiki page link gives the developer a second viewpoint of the nature of the problem. This helps if the bug report accidentally omits key information.

There is no requirement to pretend a problem doesn't exist while waiting for a fix. It is reasonable to annotate that the translation has the problem in the wiki without misleading the user into expecting something else.

You can make this annotation easier to eliminate after the bug fix. A English version Warning box like below can be inserted with the wiki code snippet that follows it:

Localization Typo

An unfortunate translation is documented above. A "localization" Gramps bug report [7854] has been filed... so any corrections might make this warning obsolete.

Gramps is volunteer powered! Readers are encouraged to become wiki editors to help keep our wiki up-to-date.

{{man warn| Localization Typo|An unfortunate translation is documented above. A "localization" Gramps bug report [[ 7854]] has been filed... so any corrections might make this warning obsolete. 

Gramps is [[How you can help|volunteer]] powered! Readers are encouraged to become wiki editors to help keep our wiki up-to-date.}}


  • Figures: localized screenshots are nice in the localized manual
    • If you can provide figures on your own, this is great. Upload them to this wiki with the following naming convention: figure_name_zz.png (zz is your language code). If the figure is language independent (such as an unlabeled icon) then just call it figure_name.png.
    • The Linux tool called imagemagick has proven very effective for taking Gramps screenshots for this wiki. (imagemagick should be installed with every linux distribution. If not with your installation, get it!) Invoke the preferred command options by using :
      import -quality 100 -trim -delay 200 -resize 500 -density 100x100 -frame -channel RGB -depth 8 screenshot.png 
      This creates a fully compressed (-quality 100), timed screenshot after 2 seconds (-delay 200) of size 500 pixels wide (-resize 500), with resolution 100 (-density 100x100), with the window frame attached (-frame) in RGB mode (-channel RGB) and bbp 24 (-depth 8). This creates images of 5 inches wide, which fit nicely on a book page, as well as on a HTML page.
    • If it is too much trouble for you, just let us know and perhaps somebody else will do it for you. Fortunately, one does not have to speak the language to make screenshots :-)
    • For maintenance, it could be more easy to follow a naming scheme :
      • filename-{gramps version number}-{locale}.png
      • filename_{gramps version number}_{locale}.png

Links to wiki manual

Your recently translated manual can be made available from within Gramps. When the localized wiki pages pages appear from clicking the Help button in Gramps dialogs or pressing the F1 key, the manual is considered enabled or activated.

You activate the manual by editing the following file: gramps/gui/ to contain your language code, you may also contact the developers of Gramps by opening a Feature request for the new language on the Bug tracker.

In that file, you see:

    'nl' : '/nl',

This maps a language code to the extension used on the wiki, so to add french, change this to:

    'nl' : '/nl',
    'fr' : '/fr',
  • Every 'manual|...' entry in the gramp.pot file refers to a section in the manual, so make sure to use good section headings so this does not change too much over time.

Note that reports/tools link to a section in the page with the same name as the report name in Gramps.

  • You should be able to edit directly on wiki or using tools like txt2po.

Also previous gettext file for the manual and Translation Memory may help you to upgrade deprecated/old gettext files.

Possible improvement

A project like GnuCash provides a complete web site environment by using gettext files, see README file and current environment.