TIP #404: Let Message Catalogs get the Locale from their File Name

Title:Let Message Catalogs get the Locale from their File Name
Version:$Revision: 1.9 $
Author:Harald Oehlmann <harald dot oehlmann at elmicron dot de>
Created:Sunday, 17 July 2011
Discussions To:Tcl Core list
Keywords:msgcat, convention


This TIP proposes a mechanism for coupling locales more strongly to the names of the files that define them, an already-recommended practice, so as to make it less error-prone to produce message catalogs.


Current message catalog files are as follows:

Example with <locale> equal "de":

::msgcat::mcset de Open Öffnen
::msgcat::mcset de Close Schliessen

The same locale value (de) is contained in the file name and in each mcset command.

This is technically unnecessary and error-prone. I found myself often copying message file contents from one language to the next and not setting the right locale in each mcset command.

The scope of this TIP is a new command similar to mcset which determines the locale from the file name.

IMHO it makes no sense to specify the locale of mcset commands and the locale in the file name different and thus separately.


mc file locale

The mc file locale is a locale specified by the file name of a message file.


Message catalogue file name: de_ch.msg

mc file locale: de_ch

The package msgcat maintains one value, mc file locale, with the following properties:

The command ::msgcat::mcconfig is shared with TIP #399. It has a new option -mcfilelocale.

New Commands

There are two new commands:

These work as:

   ::msgcat::mcset [::msgcat::mcconfig -mcfilelocale] source ?translation?
   ::msgcat::mcmset [::msgcat::mcconfig -mcfilelocale] list

The command name mcflset is an abreviation of: "message c'atalogue with file locale set'''".

Example Usages

The example of the Rationale section above may now be written as:

::msgcat::mcflset Open Öffnen
::msgcat::mcflset Close Schliessen

The locale value de only appears in the file name.

Further examples are in the tcl wiki msgcat page: [1]

Reference Implementation

See Tcl Feature Request 3544988. [2]


This document has been placed in the public domain.

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