Adding new entries to a termbase in Studio 2009/2011

Terminology is undoubtedly one of the most powerful tools in our bag and integrating it in our production environment is a must. SDL Trados 2009/2011 makes it relatively easy to add new entries to a Multiterm termbase while you translate.

1.  Ensure you have a termbase assigned to your project (in the Editor tab, go to the Term Recognition panel and click the Project Termbase Settings icon)

2. Go to the segment containing the terminology you wish to add and then highlight the source and target terms.

3. Press Ctrl+F2. The Termbase Viewer will pop up. You can add further contextual information at entry, index and term levels by choosing the relevant fields from the dropdown menus to the right of the pencil icon, assuming you have configured such fields when you created your termbase in Multiterm.

4. To save the data, click the floppy disk icon or press Ctrl+F12.

In the old days of Trados 2007, TagEditor would offer you the option of adding the entire source and target segments to the terms as contextual information. Yet another nifty feature which failed to make it to the new version…

Shortcut Monday!

MS Excel

  • F2– Edits the selected cell without having to double-click on it
  • F7 – Creates a chart
  • Ctrl + Shift + ; – Enters the current time
  • Ctrl + ; – Enters the current date
  • Alt + Shift + F1 – Inserts a new worksheet

MS Word

  • Press Ctrl+B, Ctrl+I, or Ctrl+U to apply or remove Bold, Italic or Underline respectively,  Ctrl+L to left-justify text, Ctrl+E to center, Ctrl+J to justify, and Ctrl+R to right-justify it.
  • Shift+F3 Toggles the case of any text. Useful for those instances when you LEAVE YOUR CAPS ON-  
  • Ctrl+F6/Ctrl+Shift+F6 Cycles through all open Word documents

Highlighting Markup Text in MS Word

If you have ever been asked to proofread an HTML or other tagged document outside a CAT tool, you know how annoying it is to detect the text which actually needs to be proofed while ensuring tag integrity is preserved. We can make things a bit easier in MS Word by highlighting most occurrences of the code.

  1. Copy your HTML/tagged document to MS Word
  2. Hit Ctrl+H to invoke the Find/Replace dialog bog
  3.  Click on More>> to reveal additional options
  4. Tick the Use wildcards option
  5. In the Find what: box type     \<*\>
  6. Place the cursor in the Replace With: box and leave it empty
  7. At the bottom of the dialog box, click on Format and then Font from the dropdown menu. Choose a gaudy formatting attribute, e.g. bold red color.
  8. Hit Replace All

Chances are that some instances of untranslatable text will seep through, but for the most part you will have a strong visual clue which will allow you to progress much quicker.

Making the Most of Microsoft Terminology – Part II

In the previous tutorial, we saw how to open up a Microsoft Terminology Collection file in Excel. However, the default Excel display is not user-friendly and certainly not ideal when it comes to repurposing the data.

The main striking issue is that information is split in rows as opposed to the traditional column view:

In order to address this issue we need to transpose the data so that each language is displayed in its own column. To do so, follow the steps below in the exact same order:

  1. Download Notepad++ (a free and much better alternative to the default Notepad that ships with Windows)
  2. Copy the information on Column I (term) from the Excel spreadsheet to Notepad++
  3. In Notepad++, hit Ctrl+H to invoke the Find/Replace dialog and select Extended from the Search Mode section.

Then perform the following replacement sequence, hitting Replace All:

3.1  Find What: \r\n\r\n      Replace With: $$$$$
3.2  Find What: \r\n              Replace With: \t
3.3  Find What: $$$$$          Replace With: \r\n

4. Copy the information from Notepad++ onto a new spreadsheet

If all went well, your new spreadsheet should look like so:


As you can see, EN and FR terms have been successfully transposed, but equally important, the synonyms have been preserved.

When I posted the fist part of this tutorial someone stated that one could perform a similar conversion using another free tool called ApSIC Xbench. As a matter of fact, the tool converts the original .tbx file to Excel, but apparently the synonyms are not extracted, which is not something I would be happy with. Since we have this immense hoard of information at our disposal, we might as well leverage every single bit of it.

In the next tutorial we will see how to leverage other important fields of the Microsoft termbase, in particular the Definition and Part of Speech.

Translating Excel comments in Studio 2009/2011

You have happily delivered an Excel project to your client but now they tell you that all of those hundred-odd sticky comments need to be translated as well. If you work with Trados Studio, the program will not carry those over to the editor panel by default. However, there’s a way to make that happen.

Add the Excel file to your project and, while running a batch task to prepare the file for translation (e.g. “Prepare without Project TM“), go to File Types in the Settings section of the wizard, scroll down to either Excel 2000-2003 or Excel 2007-2010 according to the version of your file. Then click on the + sign to twirl that menu open, navigate to Common and check Comments. The comments should then display in the editor panel.


You can then also use a free tool to generate a report displaying all the cells and the comments side-by-side for additional reference.

Exporting Excel comments

Tired of grappling with numerous Excel comments? There’s a very easy way to paste them either onto an adjacent column or a separate worksheet.

1. Download ASAP Utilities

2. Go the Objects+Comments dropdown menu and select Comment Tools…

3. You can then either have the tool copy the comments to an adjacent cell or create a report on a separate spreadsheet, which is very handy indeed.


Making the Most of Microsoft Terminology – Part I

The Microsoft Terminology Collection is a treasure trove for IT-related projects, but unleashing the full potential of this immense repository of information is not as easy as it used to be. This series of tutorials will focus on retrieving information from the individual glossaries and then preparing it for integration with any CAT tool.

You start by going to the Microsoft Language Portal and then clicking on the Terminology Collection tab. Choose your target language and hit “Download”. You will get a .tbx (TermBase eXchange) file, which would integrate nicely with your preferred CAT tool, but in practice you may end up losing some important information (tested with SDL Multiterm), or you may just want to access the terminology off the bat so, yet again, nothing like a good old Excel.

Opening a .tbx file in Excel may seem counterintuitive, but it is actually quite simple. Since TBX is essentially an XML file, you can open it in Excel 2007/2010 by changing the extension of the downloaded file to .xml. Say “yes” to the patronizing message warning you the file might become unusable, then right-click with the mouse to access the contextual menu, navigate to Open With and select Microsoft Office Excel.

A message will pop up asking how you want to open the file. The correct option is selected by default (As an XML table), so hit OK. Depending on your target language, Excel may take a while to crunch the file, but then you should see your terminology displayed in a tabular format containing source and target terms, description, part of speech, among other elements:

While to many of us, this format will certainly be more accessible than a .tbx, it is by no means ideal. Subsequent tutorials will describe how to manipulate and repurpose this data.