GNU gettext tools, version

Native Language Support Library and Tools

Edition, 25 March 2016

Ulrich Drepper
Jim Meyering
François Pinard
Bruno Haible


In this manual, all mentions of Emacs refers to either GNU Emacs or to XEmacs, which people sometimes call FSF Emacs and Lucid Emacs, respectively.


This limitation is not imposed by GNU gettext, but is for compatibility with the msgfmt implementation on Solaris.


Some system, e.g. mingw, don't have LC_MESSAGES. Here we use a more or less arbitrary value for it, namely 1729, the smallest positive integer which can be represented in two different ways as the sum of two cubes.


When the system does not support setlocale its behavior in setting the locale values is simulated by looking at the environment variables.


Additions are welcome. Send appropriate information to and The Unicode CLDR Project ( provides a comprehensive set of plural forms in a different format. The msginit program has preliminary support for the format so you can use it as a baseline (see section 6.1 Invoking the msginit Program).


you can also use it through the ‘MSGMERGE_OPTIONS’ option from ‘Makevars’


Note that the file name matching is done after removing any .in suffix from the input file name. Thus the pattern attribute must not include a pattern matching .in. For example, if the input file name is ‘’, the pattern should be either *.msg or just *, rather than *.in.

This document was generated on 11 June 2016 using the texi2html translator version 1.52b.