I'm setting up my basic skeleton / boilerplate I want to use for all wordpress projects. I follow Mark Jaquiths approach and include WP as a submodule. He gets it from https://github.com/WordPress/WordPress. Many of my clients are from Germany and require German language files for administration.

Is there a way I can include the localized files into my skeleton git repository?

  • 2
    probably get the translation files from svn.automattic.com/wordpress-i18n
    – Bainternet
    Commented May 26, 2013 at 14:05
  • @Bainternet hm, I am not sure git supports SVN as submodule (I know Mercurial does)
    – Rarst
    Commented May 26, 2013 at 20:11
  • no, only a mirror is a solution. You can't use a SVN as submodule in git.
    – bueltge
    Commented May 26, 2013 at 21:33
  • @Bainternet thank you. if you post your comment as an answer i will accept it as the best answer.
    – Jan Beck
    Commented May 26, 2013 at 21:36

3 Answers 3


Download your languages files from the SVN repo...

I would strongly advise against this. The repo, as storage of language files, is being discontinued, in favor of Translate WordPress. Right now, you have no guarantees that the repo has a current version of the file.

The current method of getting language files is either to download (export) them directly from Translate WordPress individually (core, admin, network and themes). You can access that directly with something like:

http://translate.wordpress.org/projects/wp/dev/de/default/export-translations?format=mo (for the .mo, replace with format=po for the .po)

Above examples are for core files only, you'd need to repeat that for /wp/dev/admin/de/default, wp/dev/admin/network/de/default, and the themes.

You can "curl" all that, obviously.

We're aware that the method is a little convoluted at the moment, but we're working on a better export tool.

  • 1
    If using the SVN repo is so bad, you might consider updating the Codex article. That's where people will first look and where I got my information from.
    – shea
    Commented Jun 25, 2013 at 10:24

Installing languages in WordPress Skeleton is pretty much the same as in a standard WP install. All WP-Skeleton does is alters the paths to accommodate WP as a Git submodule. This means instead of installing languages files under wp-content/languages or wp-includes/languages, you need to place them in content/languages.

Basically, all you need to do is:

  1. Download your languages files from the SVN repo. There is no need to add this repo as a submodule; just manually download the language files you require.
  2. Create a folder under content called languages. Place all of your .mo (and optionally .po) files here.
  3. Open up wp-config.php and set the WP_LANG constant on line 51.
  1. Go to http://pcentral.io/internationalization/ and find the official website of the desired language
  2. Click the »More« link to open the official website related to that particular translation. For example, for Russian it is currently:
  3. Find a »Download Language Pack« button and copy the URL. E.g.: http://downloads.wordpress.org/translation/core/4.0/ru_RU.zip
  4. Now SSH to your server and do this:

    cd wp-content/languages
    wget http://downloads.wordpress.org/translation/core/4.0/ru_RU.zip
    unzip ru_RU.zip
    rm ru_RU.zip

Of course, the link and the *.zip file name will vary for your particular language.

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