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localization – Android: Get missing translations for strings-resources

Posted by: admin April 23, 2020 Leave a comment


In Android, you can specify the texts in the default locale in res/values/strings.xml. Additional translations can be added for new languages in res/values-it/strings.xml (for Italian for example). If a string is not translated, the fallback-default locale is used.

Currently I can not tell which strings I still need to translate (so are in values/strings.xml, but not in values-$/strings.xml for all $ in languages) and which are translated, although the are obsolte (so are in values-$/strings.xml, but not in values/strings.xml exists $ in languages)

I’m searching for a tool which gives me the translations which are missing and the one which are obsolete.

To be honest, it is not that difficult to write such a tool for the command-line, I can only hardly believe nobody has already done this.

How to&Answers:

Interesting question. I’ve wrote simple script to find duplicate resources in android project at https://gist.github.com/1133059. It is ugly, I know, but I’ll rewrite it in a few days and maybe create a project on github.
To run it from console:
$scala DuplicatesFinder.scala /path/to/android/project

I’ve made a project on github https://github.com/4e6/android-localization-helper, maybe someone find it helpful


This isn’t automated, but it’s very fast. In Eclipse, to go Window->Show View->Other->Android->Resource Explorer.

Now, under the Resource Explorer tab at the bottom (or wherever you’ve moved it to) look under String. Each string should have the same number of versions if you have a complete translation, so you can scan down the list in just a few seconds.

Do this for each project that has strings.

I didn’t know about this until after I localized, but it’s still useful (such as when I add a new string).


If you are using Android Studio, it is easy to find which string is missing.

Right click on values/strings.xml
and choose Open Translations Editor:
pic 1

Where you can easily find missing strings in all languages as below :
enter image description here

Thank You…


The new official Android Lint tool helps you detect this problem, and many others: http://tools.android.com/tips/lint


There’s a much improved version of the Android Dev Kit lint tool in Eclipse since SDK version 17 – see the docs here: New Eclipse Lint UI

Just click the “lint” tool bar item, run it on your project then open the “is not translated” item that will appear to show you every tag that needs translation.

Credit to satur9nine – this is an updated version of their answer which lead me to this one.


You could also use Android lint (easy access from Eclipse). Right click your project -> Android Tools -> Run Lint. This will give you a list of all missing translations, and also some other common errors.

It will also show you duplicate resources and strings not available in the default translation.


On Android Studio, Analyze > Run Inspection By Name, Type following and execute inspections for Custom scope Project Production Files.

  • Extra translation
  • Incomplete translation


I’m the Product Manager for MOTODEV Studio. As @hjw mentioned, this is a feature of MOTODEV Studio called the “Localization Files Editor”. This editor is similar to a spreadsheet and lets you see all your strings in one view. You can edit as a spreadsheet or the underlying XML in the same view.

MOTODEV Studio is a branded version of Eclipse, so it should work with your existing projects if you use Eclipse. If you prefer to continue using your existing Eclipse setup, you can still use MOTODEV Studio to handle the editing of the string.xml files, just so long as only one version can have the workspace open at a time.

If you have any questions about how to use it, feel free to send me a message or post on our discussion boards at developer.motorola.com


There is none which I am aware, I am favouriting the question. 🙂 However as a best practice, I first complete the default strings.xml and translate it in the very end. I also add a small marker comment to specify end of translation and any new strings are added below that. This helps me keep track of ones which are not translated.


With latest ADT tool for eclipse you can install Lint which takes care of all the issues regarding duplicates and a lot more with its exhaustive set of warnings.


If you’re willing to use the getlocalization.com web site, which is free of charge if you’re willing to have your translators work on your localization publicly (otherwise, you have to pay to make your project private).

You can just use their Eclipse plugin, to automatically import the strings from your Android project:

Then this is the interface your translators will see when they do the actual translation:

screenshot of web interface given to translators

I recommend you right-click on the screenshot above to view it in a larger format on a separate tab. It’s actually well thought out and should make the translator’s job easier too.


Steps to get all missing translations are :

  1. enable lint error for missing translation in app level build.gradle

    lintOptions {
       abortOnError false
       enable 'MissingTranslation'
  2. add languages to compare inside default config of level.gradle (here english and hindi)

    resConfigs "en", "hi"
  3. right click on default strings.xml. Then Analyze -> Inspect Code

enter image description here

  1. now check inspection result. Android -> Lint -> Correctness -> Messages > Incomplete Translation

enter image description here

  1. All selected strings are missing translations


I created a tool to solve precisely this problem. You can download the tool from https://github.com/vijtheveg/tea.

The tool can generate an Excel spreadsheet from the Android project, like the one shown below, with the source strings and their translations shown side-by-side.
Excel spreadsheet for translation

Most importantly, the tool will output only those strings that were newly added or modified since the last translation!

You can send this Excel spreadsheet to your translator and once the translations are filled in, you can regenerate the string XML files for the target language from this Excel file.

Best of all, you can perform this process (add/delete/modify strings in the source language XML files) -> (generate Excel and send it for translation) -> (regenerate target language XML files) any number of times, and each time the tool will only output those strings that need translation into the Excel file. The tool will also delete strings that have been removed from the source language from the target language XML files.

More details on the tool’s GitHub page above. I hope you find it useful.


Do you know MotoDev Studio for Android? It features a localization tool. Within that tool all langauges are columns and all texts are rows. It’s very easy to find missing translations within that “spreadsheet”. The other way, find obsolet translations, is not that easy.


I suggest Amanuens that let you easily identify untranslated strings and strings that not match in master and translated files. It can, optionally, be configured to automatically keep translation files synchronized with the repository. You can also give your translators access to the service and they can find an easy to use web editor to translate your application.


I built a command line tool called ams (for android-missing-strings) that prints a report of every missing entry as well as leftover entries that no longer appear on your base strings.xml file.

It’s available here

ams - Android Missing Strings reporting tool.

ams [-l xx[,yy,zz...]] -o <output_file>

-h --help            Print this help

-l --lang <xx>       Specify a language or many with comma separated 2-char language codes.

                     e.g:  -l cn         (creates report for Chinese strings.xml)
                           -l cn,it,fr   (creates report for Chinese, Italian and French strings.xml files)

                     If this parameter is ommited, a report with every language file found will be created.

-o --oFile           Specify the output file name for the report

Copyright (c) 2014 - The Mit License (MIT)

Angel Leon <[email protected]>
Katay Santos <[email protected]>