How to update language strings in Textpattern CMS


If you’ve been running Textpattern on an Internet connected server, you have the ability to automatically update the language strings as the localised text is adapted and improved. I’ve talked about language strings before now, but it’s timely to remind you as the year draws to a close. The extensible nature of Textpattern is such that language support can be added for new languages and existing translations can be enhanced. In the first instance, language packs can be updated from the admin-side of Textpattern, via Admin → Preferences → Language, or the localised language equivalent to this. Each translation takes a line in the list, and the `Install from remote server` status will be one of:

  • Install
  • Update
  • Updated

…along with a timestamp of the last modification. Like this:

Google ChromeScreenSnapz014

Note the darker yellow bars with `Update` as the status. This text is a hyperlink that, assuming there is a connection to the Textpattern language server at `` – and there will be with your Arvixe server unless you’ve instructed a firewall to prevent access, will automatically update the language strings and confirm with a green status bar. Like this:

Google ChromeScreenSnapz015

If your web server cannot connect to `` but your browser can, then you can download the latest language pack(s) from `` – if you’re manually updating the language strings, you will need to copy the contents of the file to your clipboard and then paste them into the `Install from Textpack` box at the bottom of the Languages screen, like this:

Google ChromeScreenSnapz018

…then click or tap Upload. Language files are strings of text that link Textpattern short codes to localised text, like this:

#@version 4.5.7;1413205536
add_new_author => Añadir nuevo autor
and_mailed_to => y enviado a
assign_assets_to => Asignar contenido del usuario a
author_already_exists => El autor <strong>{name}</strong> ya existe.
author_deleted => Autor <strong>{name}</strong> borrado.
author_updated => Autor <strong>{name}</strong> actualizado.
a_message_will_be_sent_with_login => Se enviará un mensaje con la información de acceso.
a_new_password_will_be_mailed => Se enviará una nueva contraseña por email.

The big number on the first line is the epoch time stamp of the last update, and subsequent lines are the language mappings. As updates are made in the Textpattern `textpacks` repo on Github, language files will be updated accordingly, both for automatic updates and also manual updates.

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Pete Cooper

Pete Cooper has been using Textpattern since 2005. Textpattern is his preferred CMS weapon of choice. Its logical and flexible approach to content management makes Pete happy, as does its lightweight core and helpful user community. Pete's website - - runs on top of Textpattern and chronicles his day-to-day experiences from his home near the Atlantic in north Cornwall, United Kingdom.

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