Possible problem with .desktop files

David Planella david.planella at ubuntu.com
Fri Oct 16 18:05:36 BST 2009

El dv 16 de 10 de 2009 a les 17:52 +0200, en/na David Planella va
> El ds 03 de 10 de 2009 a les 14:43 +0200, en/na Milo Casagrande va
> escriure:
> > Hi,
> > 
> > during the today Global Jam, we found a possible problem with .desktop
> > files in Karmic.
> > 
> > There are some files that have the correct X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain,
> > while others have the new upstream string X-GNOME-Fullname with the
> > list of translations.
> > 
> > The problem is that that string looks like is not handled by the
> > X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain as are the Name and Comment ones, and
> > translations from .mo files are not read, using the X-GNOME-Fullname.
> > As an example you can see the rhythmbox.desktop file in
> > /usr/share/applications/.
> > 
> There are several things involved here:
> * This seems to have been fixed in the current version of Rhythmbox,
> which has the correct 'X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain=rhythmbox' key and domain
> at the end of /usr/share/applications/rhythmbox.desktop.

Err, sorry, I read your e-mail too quickly, of course, you are right,
the translations are not stripped because X-GNOME-Fullname is not
processed by langpack.mk. Again, for those interested in the technical
details, here's the relevant extract:

for d in $$(find debian/$(cdbs_curpkg) -type f \( -name "*.desktop" -o -name "*.directory" \) ); do \
		    echo "langpack.mk: Replacing translations with domain $$DOMAIN in $$d..."; \
		    sed -ri '/^(Name|GenericName|Comment)\[/d' $$d; \
		    echo "X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain=$$DOMAIN" >> $$d; \

> * In any case, I'm told by Martin Pitt that the Ubuntu glib, which takes
> care of loading these translations, recognises both keys (first X-GNOME,
> then X-Ubuntu), so this should not pose a problem. For those interested
> in the technical details, Martin also tells me that the langpack.mk CDBS
> rule (see [1]) has just now been updated in bzr to use X-GNOME-.

This still applies.

> * However, I see that the file contains static (literal) translations,
> which if present seem to have precedence over those in the rhythmbox.mo
> file. In general, translations should be stripped from Ubuntu .desktop
> files, but I don't quite understand what is happening with Rhythmbox,
> since it seems to be using the right gnome.mk class, which should take
> care of all this [1]. In any case, this shouldn't be a problem, either,
> and should be transparent to users.

This too (which is in fact what you were already mentioning, with a
couple of additional notes).

> Do you still see the problem? Does it affect other applications?
> > Who should we contact for this?
> > 

I've now reported this here:


David Planella
Ubuntu Translations Coordinator

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