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Instructions for translators and editors

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When you are working on the XML files it is important that you should only translate or edit those parts of the file that are "editable". This topic provides basic instructions for translators and editors of Help+Manual project, particularly those working on the XML files rather than in Help+Manual itself. How important these instructions are will depend on the XML editing tool you are using. Some XML editors will protect attributes and tags, making it difficult or impossible to accidentally damage them, others don't provide this protection and must be used with more care.

Recommendation: Don't use tools that force you to work directly on XML code

We provide tips for what to avoid when working on the XML code directly below. However, the most important recommendation here is to not work on the XML code directly at all, ever. It doesn't matter how experienced you are. If you try to translate text in the XML code directly you will damage it and you will then waste many unproductive hours trying to locate and fix the damage.

Any savings you may think you are getting by using a cheap or free tool to edit the source code directly will be eaten up many times over by all the valuable time you waste fixing the problems created when you accidentally damage the source code and make it incompatible with Help+Manual.

Use Tidy XML and eliminate manual formatting as far as possible

If you must use an XML code editor for any reason, use the Tidy XML feature to make the XML code as friendly and accessible as possible. In addition to this, we strongly recommend using the Normalize Project Styles feature in the Premium Pack Toolbox to completely eliminate manual formatting tags from your code to make it easier to work on. See Translation-friendly Tidy XML for details.

See also:

Project Synchronization

Editing XML source code