Wiki Translation

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Available languages — Wiki Translation
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Wiki Translation can be a good way to help develop the project across the world. The wiki holds a lot of important help content and documentation. We'd like to make at least some of this available in other languages. Note that translation efforts in other areas of the project are equally important if not more so (they usually happen on

Community cohesion

Unlike wikipedia, we are not aiming to capture vast amounts of knowledge in the wiki. Wikipedia decided that the best way to build their encyclopaedia was to split the communities up by language, and run them as almost entirely separate projects. The situation here is entirely different. The wiki is not the project. Translating wiki pages should be an exercise in improving community cohesion, helping everyone to understand each other, and ultimately helping to build the maps!

With this in mind we haven't deployed exactly the same wiki technology to support translations. We want the small fledging groups of people who do not speak English to feel welcome, and to have all the information they need, but we also want the community as a whole to stay together and stay focussed.

Wiki translation progress

Wiki translation is taking place on a somewhat ad-hoc basis, and you are encouraged to join in, but we also need to try and get more organised about this.

Translation efforts are still in very early stages in many languages. There are some wiki pages which are more important than others, so concentrate on these pages first.

How to translate

single page

  • Find the English version of a page in the main namespace.
If there is no english version, you create one, for example starting a new page from a search:
Type the name of the page you want (say Page name) in the Search box, and start the search.
The search results will say that no such page exists, but it will also include a (red) link to the (non existing) page. The message may say something like:
Create the page "Page name" on this wiki!
Click on the link and you will be starting to create the new page, in edit mode.
  • When you have English version of the page, switch to edit mode.
In order to have the languages tool bar displayed at the top (as you see on this page for example), be sure that the template {{Languages}} is present near the beginning of the page, otherwise insert the following wiki text in edit mode:
{{Languages|Page name}}
  • While you're in edit mode, copy the wiki text of the entire page to your clipboard. 'Save' this English version with the Languages template added.
  • Where it says 'other languages', click 'show' and follow a red link to the language you want and begin creating the new wiki page. You will see that the new page will have the same title, but a language prefix.
  • Paste in the English text from your clipboard and now start translating it into your language.

Note: due to technical reasons (limitations in the parser functions defined in the MediaWiki software showing this wiki), not all pages with existing translations will show by default in the list of available languages, but only languages for major languages of the world. The many other languages will be displayed in the second list of 'Other languages' without being tested for their existence, so this list may show both red links (missing major or minority languages), and blue links (missing minority languages). A solution is being developed and tested to solve this problem of inequal visibility, without using "costly" parser functions.
Note: before saving the new page, your language is shown as a missing language in the preview. However, after you have saved it, your language is still shown in the missing language box with black colour and bold type. This strange thing is caused by a template cache. Purge cache to rescan the available languages. Your language will be shown as available.
See also Wiki Help.


Translated pages with a title in a non-English language

If you want that a page translated to a national language have the title translated also, it is necessary to maintain anyway a page with english title preceded by language code and colon. This page would be a simply redirect to the actual page with title in national language.

Let's suppose that the English page name is "english_page_name", and you already have got a translated page with the title "XX:english_page_name" (where XX is the target language code like DE, IT, ...). Now you want the translated page to get a translated title "XX:translated_page_name" too. Do the following steps:

1. Go to the edit-view of the translated version (XX:english_page_name) and find the code-piece like {{Language}}
2. Change this code-piece to the following: {{Language|english_page_name}}. That is necessary to keep the language bar working after we moved the page.
3. Use the move function of the wiki to create a new translated title for the page: Click the small arrow next to the search bar, top right of the page, then move.
4. on the upcoming page, use the form like this:
To new title: the translated title
Move associated talk page: check this
click Move page

Now the content is moved to a page with the new translated page name "XX:translated_page_name". And also, a redirect is automatically established, so all old links to XX:english_page_name will be redirected to the new translated page.

But there is one problem left. Sometimes there are already some pages redirecting to the old english named page (our new redirecting page). Then there would occur a double redirection, and that causes problems because the Wiki-System will stop the second redirection (see To prevent this from happening:

5. open again the XX:english_page_name - Oh yeah, you can't open it because you will be redirected. Just use the link in the upper left corner: (Redirected from XX:english_page_name)
6. Now we opened the old page title which is now just a redirecting page
7. open the link What links here in the left menu.
8. now check if there are any pages where is written (redirect page) in black color.
9. Open this page, edit them and change the redirect directly to XX:translated_page_name

This would fix the double redirect problem and you have done a clean fresh title translation.

Instructions for the Languages template

This is a template that lists all languages available. It is based on parser functions from mediawiki and the ISO 639-1 language code.
This automatically generates a language menu consisting of links to the original page (in English) and all translated pages. The links are written in the respective language: Deutsch, English, French, etc.

The complete syntax is:

{{Languages|ns=NameSpace:|Page name}}

The parameter Page name is not necessary if the title of current page is equal to english page title, because his default value is assumed to be exactly the title of current page
The parameter ns= is only required if the translated page (or referred pages) stay in a different namespace than current page (this concerns pages translated in a few languages that have a dedicated namespace, listed in the table below or wikilink to page located in a different namespace). Anyway the default value is null and then refers to main namespace.

Example for actually implemented name spaces and languages (2009-06):

Page_name (should be in English)
de:Page_name (German)
en:Page_name (English)
es:Page_name (Spanish)
fr:Page_name (French)
it:Page_name (Italian)
nl:Page_name (Dutch)
cs:Page_name (Czech)
uk:Page_name (Ukrainian, not United Kingdom!!!)

Note that language codes used in prefixes are shown here using lowercase letters. But for legacy reasons on this wiki, some languages have their own dedicated namespaces that are named using capital letters. The letter case is significant for prefixes that are not declared on this wiki with a dedicated namespace. But the lettercase of recognized namespace names is not significant, so you can use lowercase letters everywhere for all language codes (this will simplify maintenance tasks for links, notably by avoiding the creation of additional redirects on thiw wiki).

Brief instruction

  1. For correct work of the template all page names are in English.
    Every translated page needs a page name with a language code as a prefix, followed by a colon and the english page name. If you want to translate the title then make sure that the page with the prefix is redirected to a localized article.
    1. If the "plain" English page name content is written in English, the English page name does not have a prefix in the file name.
      Example: Page_name (English content) - FR:Page_name - DE:Page_name
    2. If the "plain" English page name should be a redirect to a page in some other language, the english translated page does need a prefix of "EN".
      Example: Page_name (redirect to non-english page) - EN:Page_name - FR:Page-name - DE:Page_name
  2. the following has to be included in each page: {{Languages|Page_name}}

If you click on "missing languages", and then you click on a red link, it automatically opens a new page with the right prefix and the right page name. Copy the original text to this page and translate it. In the first line you put {{Languages|Page_name}}

Language prefixes and namespaces

Many languages are supported merely as a wiki page naming convention, while some of the more widely used ones are set up as proper namespaces within the wiki software, allowing features like tickboxes on the advanced search. Pages can be listed by prefix (for any language) using Special:PrefixIndex.

Note that only a few languages (for which there are ample contents on this wiki and enough maintainers) have a dedicated namespace on this wiki (for historic reasons, these namespaces are using capital letters). These namespaces allow to perform searches in the many pages created in those languages. Most languages won't have this dedicated namespace. This wiki should progressively be updated to use autotranslatable templates (in a way similar to Wikimedia Commons), instead of having to maintaining a lot of separate pages for each language, for contents that can be maintained in one place independantly of the language displayed.

All other translated pages are stored in the main namespace, using a language-code prefix that should be written in lowercase (only the first letter of the prefix will be automatically uppercased, but this letter case is not significant). This wiki may still contain a few languages for which the language code was uppercased. But to ease the maintenance of links be consistant with the letter case of codes already used in the Languages template shown at the top of translated pages.

For new language, please use language codes conforming to the BCP 47 standard — check the Registry of language subtags on the site (according to the BCP 47 standard, currently in RFC 5646): generally this means using the ISO 649-1 two-letter code where it exists, otherwise the two-letter technical ISO 646-2 language code, otherwise the three-letter ISO 649-3 code; avoid using obsolete language codes that are marked in this registry as being replaced by another one, or deprecated and merged into another one; for some languages, the language code may be followed by a ISO 15924 script code; it may also be followed by a ISO 3166-1 country/region code, but this usage is no longer recommended for coding a language variant, and this wiki will prefer to be really international and edited in a way acceptable in all regions where the same language is written.

Note also that a few language codes used for Wikipedia editions (and in interwiki links) do not apply to this scheme, for historical reasons, and have still not been converted or redirected to use the recommended BCP 47 codes (which is the universal standard for the web).

OSM WP BCP 47 (RFC 5646 or later) name (in native) name (in English) wiki namespace major (tested)
af af af Afrikaans Afrikaans No No
am am am አማርኛ Amharic No No
as as as অসমীয়া Assamese No No
ar ar ar العربية Arabic No Yes
ast ast ast asturianu Asturian No No
az az az azərbaycanca Azerbaijan No Yes
bg bg bg български Bulgarian No Yes
bn bn bn বাংলা Bengali No Yes
br br br brezhoneg Breton No No
bs bs bs bosanski Bosnian No Yes
ca ca ca català Catalan (Valencian) No Yes
co co co corsu Corsican No No
cs cs cs čeština Czech No Yes
da da da dansk Danish No Yes
de de de Deutsch German Yes Yes
diq diq diq Zazaki Zazaki No No
dv dv dv ދިވެހިބަސް Maldivian No No
el el el Ελληνικά Greek No Yes
en en en English English No (default namespace) Yes
eo eo eo Esperanto Esperanto No No
es es es español Spanish Yes Yes
et et et eesti Estonian No Yes
eu eu eu euskara Basque No No
fa fa fa فارسی Farsi (Persian) No Yes
fi fi fi suomi Finnish No Yes
fr fr fr français French Yes Yes
fy fy fy Frysk Western Frisian No No
ga ga ga Gaeilge Irish Gaelic No No
gd gd gd Gàidhlig Scottish Gaelic No No
gl gl gl galego Galician No No
gcf none gcf Kréyòl gwadloupéyen Guadeloupean Creole French No No
gsw gsw gsw Alemannisch Alemannic / Alsatian No No
gu gu gu ગુજરાતી Gujarati No No
ha ha ha Hausa Hausa No No
he he he עברית Hebrew No Yes
hi hi hi हिन्दी Hindi No Yes
hr hr hr hrvatski Croatian No Yes
ht ht ht Kreyòl ayisyen Haitian Creole No No
hu hu hu magyar Hungarian No Yes
hy hy hy Հայերեն Armenian No Yes
ia ia ia interlingua Interlingua No No
id id id Bahasa Indonesia Indonesian No Yes
ig ig ig Igbo Igbo No No
is is is íslenska Icelandic No Yes
it it it italiano Italian Yes Yes
ja ja ja 日本語 Japanese Yes Yes
jv jv jv Basa Jawa Javanese No No
ka ka ka ქართული Georgian No Yes
kk kk kk қазақша Kazakh No Yes
km km km ភាសាខ្មែរ Khmer (Cambodian) No Yes
kn kn kn ಕನ್ನಡ Kannada No No
ko ko ko 한국어 Korean No Yes
ku ku ku Kurdî Kurdish No No
lb lb lb Lëtzebuergesch Luxembourgish No No
lo lo lo ລາວ Laotian No Yes
lt lt lt lietuvių Lithuanian No Yes
lv lv lv latviešu Latvian No Yes
mg mg mg Malagasy Malagasy No No
min min min Baso Minangkabau Baso Minangkabau No No
mk mk mk македонски Macedonian No Yes
ml ml ml മലയാളം Malayalam No Yes
mn mn mn монгол Mongolian No Yes
mr mr mr मराठी Marathi No No
ms ms ms Bahasa Melayu Malaysian No No
mt mt mt Malti Maltese No No
my my my မြန်မာဘာသာ Myanmarese (Burmese) No No
nan nan nan Bân-lâm-gú Min Nan No No
nds nds nds Plattdüütsch Low German No No
nds-nl nds-nl nds-nl Nedersaksies Low Saxon No No
ne ne ne नेपाली Nepalese No No
nl nl nl Nederlands Dutch/Flemish Yes Yes
nn nn nn norsk nynorsk Norwegian (Nynorsk) No Yes
no no no norsk bokmål Norwegian (Bokmal) No Yes
oc oc oc occitan Occitan No No
om om om Oromoo Oromo No No
or or or ଓଡ଼ିଆ Oriya No Yes
pa pa pa ਪੰਜਾਬੀ Panjabi No No
pl pl pl polski Polish No Yes
ps ps ps پښتو Pushto No No
pt pt pt português Portuguese No Yes
pt-br none, see pt pt-BR português do Brasil Brazilian Portuguese No Yes
ro ro ro română Romanian No Yes
ru ru ru русский Russian Yes Yes
sd sd sd سنڌي Sindhi No No
si si si සිංහල Sinhalese No No
sk sk sk slovenčina Slovak No Yes
sl sl sl slovenščina Slovenian No Yes
so so so Soomaaliga Somali No No
sq sq sq shqip Albanian No Yes
sr sr sr српски / srpski Serbian No Yes
sv sv sv svenska Swedish No Yes
sw sw sw Kiswahili Swahili No No
ta ta ta தமிழ் Tamil No Yes
te te te తెలుగు Telugu No Yes
tg tg tg тоҷикӣ Tajik No No
th th th ไทย Thai No Yes
tm tm tm tm Turkmen No No
tr tr tr Türkçe Turkish No Yes
uk uk uk українська Ukrainian No Yes
ur ur ur اردو Urdu No Yes
uz uz uz oʻzbekcha Uzbek No No
vi vi vi Tiếng Việt Vietnamese No Yes
wo wo wo Wolof Wolof No No
wuu wuu wuu 吴语 Wu No No
xh xh xh isiXhosa Xhosa No No
yi yi yi ייִדיש Yiddish No No
yo yo yo Yorùbá Yoruba No No
yue yue yue 粵語 Cantonese No No
za za za Vahcuengh Zhuang No No
zh-hans none, see zh zh-Hans 中文(简体)‎ Simplified Chinese No Yes
zh-hant none, see zh zh-Hant 中文(繁體)‎ Traditional Chinese No Yes
zu zu zu isiZulu Zulu No No


  • The Min Nan language spoken in Taiwan ("zh-min-nan-TW" in the old RFC 3066, or better now "nan-TW" or just "nan", see BCP 47) is normally written in the Latin script (rather than the simplified Han script, for which it is almost impossible to differentiate from Chinese written with the Simplified Han orthography), and has its own distinctive language code "nan". Taiwanese Chinese (zh-TW) is completely unrelated to Min Nan; the use of zh-TW is deprecated, use Traditional Chinese ("zh-Hant") instead. Feel free to create pages translated in Min Nan, if you need, using the standard "nan" language code.
  • See Chinese Wikipedia for informations about Chinese languages on WP ! If the transcoder is implemented here on this wiki, we would no longer need to maintain separate pages with orthographic differences between "zh-Hans" (essentially the same for the P.R. of China mainland, and Singapore) and "zh-Hant" (essentially the same for Taiwan, Hong Kong SAR, and Macau SAR)
  • Since Moldavian "ro-md"/"mo"" is not needed and should be removed! See Closure of Moldovan Wikipedia ! The only remaining difference of Moldovan was when the Romanian language was written in the Cyrillic script by people living in Moldova before its independance from USSR. The Russian minority living in the cessessionist Eastern part of Moldova, use the Russian language written in the Cyrillic scipt, not Moldovan/Romanian, but the other Moldovans do speak Romanian (with just minor vocabulary differences that have been developed when Moldova was occupied by USSR, differences that are now disappearing fast with the increased exchanges with Romanian medias and the return to the use of the Latin alphabet, and with which people of both countries can coexist with an excellent and evident mutual understanding.
  • The column "major (tested)" indicates which languages are automatially tested for looking for translated pages that are transcluding Template:Languages at top of pages. This navigation template will automatically detect the existence of translated pages and will avoid showng red links. But such detection is limited to about 50 languages, for technical reasons in this wiki. All other languages are only listed as "Other languages" in this navigation box, in a list with many red links hidden by default. For this reason, only major languages (or regional languages for which this wiki has significant contents content to show) will be part of the tested language list which is not hidden by default.
  • Many other languages may be referenced for the translations of toponyms and POIs in the OSM database (for example for name=*, using BCP47 language codes as suffixes), but most of these languages are not used for translations in this documentation wiki (they will probably never appear as "major (tested)" in the list above).