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Submitting translations[edit]

Navit uses gettext to display translated text. Gettext uses so-called ".po files" to hold the translated texts. The .po files for Navit are located in the source tree under navit/po. In Navit, they have the file ending (the .po files are generated from these files during the build).

Web-based translation tool[edit]

The easiest and prefered way to are the web-based translation tools of Launchpad:

This allows everybody who signs up at the service to browse/contribute/edit the translations of every language. You are guided by launchpad during the process and help is offered in the whole wizard. In case of any questions, please get in contact with the team. files[edit]

Please submit manual translations as patches against the files. Before correcting the translations, please update the file as described below.

Before working on the translations, it's important for the files to be current - the original texts in the source code change regularly, and if the files are not current, you may translate text that is no longer part of Navit.

During Navit's build, .po files are generated automatically from the files under navit/po, taking into account any changed texts in the source code. To update a file, just do a complete build (make all), then copy the [language].po file that was created over the [language] file. This new file will contain the strings as they appear in the source code, along with the old translations from the previous file. Old translations for texts that no longer occur in the source code will appear commented out (with a leading "#"). New strings from the source code will have emtpy translations.

You can now correct/add translations, possibly using the old translations.

Developers with commit access[edit]

Even if you have commit access, please ensure your translations go through Launchpad! Otherwise the next update from Launchpad will wipe out your work. Also, going through Launchpad ensures your translations are visible to contributors there so they won't unnecessarily translate strings which you have already taken care of.

Launchpad lets you work online through the web interface, or offline by exporting .po files, editing them locally and uploading them back to Launchpad.

To upload a file to Launchpad:

  • Make sure your work is based on a translation file exported from Launchpad. This is a requirement in order to prevent translators who work offline from inadvertently reverting translations made by others. Launchpad will check all uploaded files and reject those that don't have an export timestamp set by Launchpad.
  • Open the translation page for the language you want to update. (If you can't find it, open the page for a random language and replace the language identifier in the URL.)
  • Click Upload translation.
  • Click Browse and select your translation file. The file must have a .po extension, else it will be rejected – rename it if necessary.
  • Click Upload.
  • You're almost done! Your translations now need to be reviewed in order to finish the import.

The workflow to add translations is as follows:

  • If you want to work online, make your edits first.
  • Pull the latest version of the source code from the repository.
  • Export translations from Launchpad (using the Download link on the Translations Overview page) and copy them into your code tree.
  • Build Navit (for whichever platform you like) – this will regenerate the .po files in your build directory.
  • Rename the .po files that were created in your build directory to and copy them over the existing ones in the Navit code tree.
  • If you want to work offline, make your changes now, then upload the changed files to Launchpad.
  • Now commit your changes to SVN trunk. (A script to update translations from Launchpad is currently being worked on.)


To have a consistent user experience, we have a dictionary of terms used in different places in our application. Please refer to this dictionary for translations.

English German
Bookmark Lesezeichen
Waypoint Wegpunkt
street, road Straße
exit Ausfahrt
ramp Auffahrt
roundabound Kreisverkehr
position Standort
roadbook Wegbeschreibung
destination Ziel
navigation Navigation
position Position
command Befehl
Point ?Punkt
Map point ?Kartenpunkt
screen coord Bildschirm
settings Einstellungen
vehicle Fahrzeug

Not to translate[edit]

  • (OSM) "tag"
  • "POI"