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4.2 Filling the PO File Header

The PO file header as generated usually looks like this:

# Copyright (C) YEAR Free Software Foundation, Inc.
# This file is distributed under the same license as the PACKAGE package.
#, fuzzy
msgid ""
msgstr ""
"Project-Id-Version: PACKAGE VERSION\n"
"POT-Creation-Date: 2008-02-06 16:25-0500\n"
"PO-Revision-Date: YEAR-MO-DA HO:MI+ZONE\n"
"Last-Translator: FULL NAME <EMAIL@ADDRESS>\n"
"Language-Team: LANGUAGE <>\n"
"MIME-Version: 1.0\n"
"Content-Type: text/plain; charset=CHARSET\n"
"Content-Transfer-Encoding: ENCODING\n"

You have to edit the header to match the already established conventions, and the rules for translations. For reference, here is a list with all fields explained:


Add here the filename of the original article, without the sub-directory, like “body-include-1.html” or “free-sw.html”.


Do not edit this field, it is already set when the POT is created.


Likewise, do not edit. This field is automatically filled in when you save the file with any decent PO editor.


The name and email address of the last translator who has edited the translation. Pay attention that normally this is the name of a member of your team, it can be the translation team leader if he/she was the person who updated the translation. For example:

Elvis Parsley <>

This field should contain the mailing list on which the translation team can be reached—usually www-LANG-… Example:

Czech <>

Leave it like it is.


Usually this is text/plain; charset=UTF-8; change the charset accordingly.


Set this to 8bit. Note that the PO file header ends with this field, and it should contain a newline (‘\n’). Unfortunately, some PO editors remove the newline, which causes an unnecessary revision when the file is automatically modified by GNUN’s rules.

Here is an example of a properly edited header:

# Bulgarian translation of
# Copyright (C) 2008 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
# This file is distributed under the same license as the article.
# Yavor Doganov <>, 2008.
msgid ""
msgstr ""
"Project-Id-Version: free-sw.html\n"
"POT-Creation-Date: 2008-02-06 16:25-0500\n"
"PO-Revision-Date: 2008-02-09 15:23+0200\n"
"Last-Translator: Yavor Doganov <>\n"
"Language-Team: Bulgarian <>\n"
"MIME-Version: 1.0\n"
"Content-Type: text/plain; charset=UTF-8\n"
"Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit\n"

Notice the absence of the “fuzzy” marker; you should “unfuzzy” the header after entering the necessary information (this is done by simply pressing TAB in PO mode).

It is recommended that you wrap all lines in the comments to be less than 80 characters; that looks better from a purely aesthetic point of view and improves the performance of’s publish rule (see publish).

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