Translating Obi

Translating Obi

There are two ways to localize Obi in your own language:

  1. Directly editing the latest resource files. This method has an advantage as the latest files are translated but it requires technical skills.
  2. Translation using MS Excel. Most user-friendly method, well-suited for screen reader users.

Both processes are described below.

Translation of files from repository


Download Obi repository from github.

In Obi repository, you need to localize the resx files to local language as follows:

  • Copy the resx files and rename it with your language code e.g. messages.resx should be renamed to or for arabic egypt. Please include the resx files in the ProjectView and Dialogs folder also along with resx files that lie in Obi’s main folder.
  • Locate the data element and value element in these resx files which are actually xml files and replace the english text by the local language text.
  • Send these resource files with local language to us at email and we will then create a resource file for local language and package with Obi.


Translation using MS Excel (user-friendly method)


Please download OBI 4.6 latest localizer files package and unzip the files in a folder. Please follow the following Instructions to translate OBI user interface into your Language:

1. Translation of text of menus and dialogue boxes:

A) All words or phrases that need to be translated are listed in column B of excel files. In total, there are eight excel files.These are:

  • Dialog Translation-multiple sheets.xlsx
  • Messages Translation.xlsx
  • ObiForm Translation.xlsx
  • Pipeline&Peakmeter Translation-multiple sheets.xlsx
  • Project View Translation-multiple sheets.xlsx
  • User control Translation-multiple sheets.xlsx
  • About Obi Translation.xlsx
  • Profile Description Translation.xlsx


B) The excel files have multiple spread sheets. please translate Words or phrases mentioned in column B of all the spread sheets.

C) Text to be translated is written in column B of all spread sheets in English Language. Please write translated text to the right of corresponding words of phrases in column C. e.g. the translation for English words in cell b2 has to be written in the cell c2. Translation of words written in b3 should be written in c3 and so on.
Warning: Please do not change or edit the text in column B (containing the English terms) in any case. All the translations should be placed only in column C.

D) Some words have character “&” in the text e.g. O&utput device name:. The character & is used for mnemonics, In the above example, the character “&” is placed before the alphabet “u”. Thus in the menu item O&utput then alt + u will become the shortcut key. So please place the character “&” in the local language judiciously. Duplicate mnemonics are not allowed, so please do not use character “&” with the same alphabet again with in same spreadsheet.

E) Do not translate Special characters like \r\n in local language, these are used for text formatting e.g. line breaks.

F) The symbols like {0}, {1} are place folders where the information is placed dynamically while the application is running. Please use these at the same place in the translated words/phrases.

G) There may be some words specific to DAISY book structure like DAISY 3, footnotes, sidebars, endnotes, annotations, prodnotes, notes, page, heading. To indentify these terms, in column B, we have provided the note: [DAISY book structure term]. For such terms, Any one of the following 2 approaches can be followed:

  • If the users are little familiar with English then these can be kept in English Language Script itself. This is because these terms are a part of DAISY specifications, & may be encountered during operations like validation, so it is good to be familiar with the original DAISY terms.
  • If the users are not having familiarity with English then these can be translated to local language.

The decision, whether to keep the DAISY book structure terms in English or to translate to the local language resides with the translators, & depends on the intended user base.

2. Translation of help document:

a) Open Obi Help.chm in a chm editing tool such as html help workshop.

b) Disintegrate the chm file into individual html files, and translate each html file.

c) Build the chm file again.

This step of translating the Obi help is optional because the efforts required in translating the complete chm help are high.