Where to Find BuddyPress Language Files

Did you know that BuddyPress can be used in different languages? It’s actually a very international community. Based on the results from a survey conducted in 2013, nearly 50% of BuddyPress sites are in languages other than English.


With BuddyPress being used in so many different countries, it’s important to know where to find BuddyPress language files. Unfortunately, many of them are scattered throughout the web, as there isn’t a centralized place for them yet.

The largest collection of files can be found at translate.wordpress.org. It isn’t readily apparent how to get translation files from this location, but the process is very simple, as outlined in the BuddyPress codex:

  • Select your language
  • At the bottom of the page select ‘all current’ as ‘.mo’ and press ‘export’
  • Do the same to get the ‘.po’ file


If your language isn’t represented there, you might also try the BuddyPress i18n repo.

How to Contribute to BuddyPress Translations

You don’t necessarily have to know another language to contribute to translation. Given the international makeup of the BuddyPress community, it’s imperative that plugin authors internationalize their plugins in order to make sure that users are able to translate them. This is one surefire way to widen your audience.

If you are able to contribute a translation or help with an incomplete translation, you can do so online at the BuddyPress translation project. You can also create a translation independently using software like PoEdit.

Translations are some of the most overlooked contributions, but they are vital to BuddyPress’ global user base. The number of translatable strings in the BuddyPress.pot file has increased with each major release, from 910 strings in 1.0 to 1,311 strings in 1.9. That means that translations usually require updates every time there’s a new version of BuddyPress. Contributing a translation of BuddyPress in your language helps make it possible for people around the world to use this powerful plugin to create their own social networks.


5 responses to “Where to Find BuddyPress Language Files”

  1. If you have automatic updates enabled for translations in WordPress you will also receive bbPress & BuddyPress translations automatically. ** :)


    ** Caveat: Functionally this works now, we are waiting on @nacin for some new automation scripts for this to become fully automated rather than a pseudo manual process at the moment.

    • Those language packs sound good in theory. However, I don’t want to wake up in the morning only to find the language files of my forum or community got updated with the latest the community has “prepared”…

      I believe in open source community but when it comes to translations — actual translating happens fully without context in GlotPress — I rather have good principles, concept and all from one source (or a small team), than so many different translation/language styles in one project translation!

      (Not to speak about custom translations, though… The second most common request I get for projects like WooCommerce, bbPress, BuddyPress, you name it…)

      • Thanks for the reply David, you do have an awesome collection of translations on your site.

        I am not entirely sure of what the future holds for automatic translation updates but there may end up a way so you could link to your translations so any users of your translations could receive these via auto updates if you wanted to offer this.


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