Converters change many different formats to PO and back again. Sometimes only one direction is supported, or conversion is done using non-PO formats. The converters follow a general pattern of usage, understanding that will make the converters much easier to use and understand.


The PO tools allow you to manipulate and work with PO files

Quality Assurance

These tools are especially useful for measuring and improving translation quality.

  • junitmsgfmt – run msgfmt and provide JUnit type output for use in continuous integration systems like Hudson and Jenkins

  • poconflicts – extract messages that have conflicting translation

  • pofilter – filter PO files to find common errors using a number of tests

  • pogrep – find strings in your PO files

  • pomerge – merge file extracted using pofilter back into the original files

  • porestructure – restructures PO files according to poconflict directives

Other tools

  • Levenshtein distance – edit distance algorithms for translation memory matching

  • poclean – produces a clean file from an unclean file (Trados/Wordfast) by stripping out the tw4win indicators

  • pocompile – create an MO (Machine Object) file from a PO or XLIFF file

  • pocount – Count words and strings in PO, XLIFF and other types of translatable files

  • podebug – Add debug strings to messages

  • posegment – Break a PO or XLIFF files into sentence segments, useful for creating a segmented translation memory

  • poswap – uses a translation of another language that you would rather use than English as source language

  • poterminology – extracts potential terminology from your translation files

  • pretranslate – fill any missing translations from translation memory via fuzzy matching.

  • tmserver – a Translation Memory server, can be queried over HTTP using JSON


The scripts are for working with and manipulating PO files. Unlike the tools which are written in Python, the scripts are written in bash. Some of them are packaged since version 1.0 of the Toolkit, but you might need to download them from version control and do a manual installation .