Errors in Ubuntu debian-installer translations

Colin Watson cjwatson at
Wed Apr 1 13:09:50 BST 2009


I received a report today of a mistake in the German translation of
debian-installer, which prompted me to check for other similar errors.
When translating the installer, it is very important to make sure that
text such as ${WORD} is preserved *exactly*. (Of course, you may
rearrange the text around it, but the installer looks for ${...} when
substituting in variables and it's very important that that text is
still there, with exactly the same variable name inside ${...}, or else
the result will be ugly.) See this page for more detail:

I used a script written by the upstream d-i translation coordinators to
check for this, and to my dismay there are a very large number of
suspicious translations. Some of these may be inherited from mistakes
made by Debian translators, but from my quick glance through some of
them, a lot of them are mistakes made by Ubuntu translators. Here's the

As a matter of urgency for Ubuntu 9.04, please check whether your
language is listed at the URL above and correct any mistaken
translations. Feel free to contact me for help (IRC: cjwatson or the
#ubuntu-installer channel on I am happy to correct
the strings for a language in Launchpad if its translators give me
permission to do so; I'm a translations administrator so technically
have the privileges, but would prefer translators to fix this


Colin Watson                                       [cjwatson at]

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