using gettext for .desktop translations

Chusslove Illich caslav.ilic at
Sat Dec 12 11:11:25 GMT 2009

>> [: Chusslove Illich :]
>> The problem is that this means that .desktop files must be modified at
>> install time, to insert the configured base directory. To me this looks
>> on the verge of being a showstopper [...]
> [: Oswald Buddenhagen :]
> i don't think the problem is any different, from, say, icons. or the
> desktop files themselves. so, either install the .mo files into a common
> directory, or add the path to the usual xdg path.

On the conceptual side, I don't think this is acceptable. What you say is
that two versions of application cannot coexist and be properly translated.
This would be fine if two versions of application could not coexist at all,
but this is normally not the case and would be considered a bug if so.

On the practical side, my /usr/share contains 521 different directories with
*.desktop files alone, and there are .desktop files with many other
extensions. .desktop files are also frequently used (at least in KDE) not as
a cross-desktop/cross-app mechanism, but as application's internal resource.

Therefore, I'd rather keep the current static translation system if dynamic
translations could not be made to behave as expected for Gettext, i.e.
different versions of software coexisting and using their own translations.

Chusslove Illich (Часлав Илић)
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