source: trunk/third/gettext/README @ 18200

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1This is the GNU gettext package.  It is interesting for authors or
2maintainers of other packages or programs which they want to see
3internationalized.  As one step the handling of messages in different
4languages should be implemented.  For this task GNU gettext provides
5the needed tools and library functions.
7Users of GNU packages should also install GNU gettext because some
8other GNU packages will use the gettext program included in this
9package to internationalize the messages given by shell scripts.
11Another good reason to install GNU gettext is to make sure the
12here included functions compile ok.  This helps to prevent errors
13when installing other packages which use this library.  The message
14handling functions are not yet part of POSIX and ISO/IEC standards
15and therefore it is not possible to rely on facts about their
16implementation in the local C library.  For this reason, GNU gettext
17tries using the system's functionality only if it is a GNU gettext
18implementation (possibly a different version); otherwise, compatibility
19problems would occur.
21We felt that the Uniforum proposals has the much more flexible interface
22and, what is more important, does not burden the programmers as much as
23the other possibility does.
26Please share your results with us.  If this package compiles ok for
27you future GNU release will likely also not fail, at least for reasons
28found in message handling.  Send comments and bug reports to
32The goal of this library was to give a unique interface to message
33handling functions.  At least the same level of importance was to give
34the programmer/maintainer the needed tools to maintain the message
35catalogs.  The interface is designed after the proposals of the
36Uniforum group.
39The homepage of this package is at
43The primary FTP site for its distribution is
48The configure script provides two non-standard options.  These will
49also be available in other packages if they use the functionality of
50GNU gettext.  Use
52        --disable-nls
54if you absolutely don't want to have messages handling code.  You will
55always get the original messages (mostly English).  You could consider
56using NLS support even when you do not need other tongues.  If you do
57not install any messages catalogs or do not specify to use another but
58the C locale you will not get translations.
60The set of languages for which catalogs should be installed can also be
61specified while configuring.  Of course they must be available but the
62intersection of these two sets are computed automatically.  You could
63once and for all define in your profile/cshrc the variable LINGUAS:
65(Bourne Shell)          LINGUAS="de fr nl"; export LINGUAS
67(C Shell)               setenv LINGUAS "de fr nl"
69or specify it directly while configuring
71        env LINGUAS="de fr nl" ./configure
73Consult the manual for more information on language names.
75The second configure option is
77        --with-included-gettext
79This forces to use the GNU implementation of the message handling library
80regardless what the local C library provides.  This possibility is
81useful if the local C library is a glibc 2.1.x or older, which didn't
82have all the features the included libintl has.
85Other files you might look into:
87`ABOUT-NLS' -   current state of the GNU internationalization effort
88`COPYING' -     copying conditions
89`INSTALL' -     general compilation and installation rules
90`NEWS' -        major changes in the current version
91`THANKS' -      list of contributors
94Some points you might be interested in before installing the package:
961.  If your system's C library already provides the gettext interface
97    and its associated tools don't come from this package, it might be
98    a good idea to configure the package with
99        --program-prefix=g
101    Systems affected by this are:
102        Solaris 2.x
1042.  Some system have a very dumb^H^H^H^Hstrange version of msgfmt, the
105    one which comes with xview.  This one is *not* usable.  It's best
106    you delete^H^H^H^H^H^Hrename it or install this package as in the
107    point above with
108        --program-prefix=g
1103.  The locale name alias scheme implemented here is in a similar form
111    implemented in the X Window System.  Especially the alias data base
112    file can be shared.  Normally this file is found at something like
114        /usr/lib/X11/locale/locale.alias
116    If you have the X Window System installed try to find this file and
117    specify the path at the make run:
119    make aliaspath='/usr/lib/X11/locale:/usr/local/lib/locale'
121    (or whatever is appropriate for you).  The file name is always
122    locale.alias.
123    In the misc/ subdirectory you find an example for an alias database file.
1254.  The msgmerge program performs fuzzy search in the message sets.  It
126    might run a long time on slow systems.  I saw this problem when running
127    it on my old i386DX25.  The time can really be several minutes,
128    especially if you have long messages and/or a great number of
129    them.
130       If you have a faster implementation of the fstrcmp() function and
131    want to share it with the rest of us, please contact me.
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