Pagekit includes capabilities to display messages in different languages. This allows the interface to be localized for any number of languages.

There is a difference between languages and locales, as there might be different versions of a certain language spoken in a particular region (for example en_GB vs. en_US).

Language files

Pagekit's core comes with language files provided.




Path Description
messages.pot This is the main file with all translatable strings. Used as a base to create localized versions. Regularly uploaded to Transifex by the Pagekit maintainers.
Each folder corresponds to a locale
xx_XX/formats.json Localized Format strings
xx_XX/languages.json Localized language names
xx_XX/territories.json Localized territory names

Formats, languages and territories are defined by the Unicode Common Locale Data Repository.

The translation is a simple mapping from the English version of the string to a localized version (de_DE/messages.php).

"No database connection." => "Keine Datenbankverbindung."


To get the localized version of a string, you can use the global function __(...) inside a PHP file. In a Vue template, use the trans filter on a string.

Pagekit will automatically check the active locale and return a localized version of the string available.

In PHP files:

echo __('Save');

In Vue templates:

{{ 'Save' | trans }}


Suppose you have a name stored in $name and want to include it in a localized string. You can pass parameters to the translation functions to do simple string replacement.

$message = __("Hello %name%!", ["%name%" => $name]);

In Vue templates you can pass parameters to the trans filter.

{{ 'Installing %title%' | trans {title:pkg.title} }}


To choose from several messages depending on a number, you can use a syntax of specifying alternatives and determine certain numbers or even intervals. Use the _c(...) function that also supports replacement parameters.

$message = _c('{0} No Item enabled.|{1} Item enabled.|]1,Inf[ Items enabled.', count($ids))

In Vue templates you can use the transChoice filter.

{{ '{0} %count% Files|{1} %count% File|]1,Inf[ %count% Files' | transChoice count {count:count} }}

To specify the number that matches, you can use the number in curly brackets {0}, labels to make it more readable one: more: or intervals ]1,Inf]. These variants can also be mixed.

An interval can represent a finite set of numbers: {1,2,3,4} and it can represent numbers between two numbers: [1, +Inf], ]-1,2[. The left delimiter can be [ (inclusive) or ] (exclusive). The right delimiter can be [ (exclusive) or ] (inclusive). Beside numbers, you can use -Inf and +Inf for the infinite.

Create language files for your extension

To translate your own extension, use the command line tool which will extract all translatable strings.

./pagekit extension:translate pagekit/extension-hello

This will create /packages/pagekit/extensions-hello/languages/messages.pot including all strings that have been found. These have been collected by finding all calls to one of the translation functions __(), _c() or the trans and transchoice filters in Vue components.

However, the automatic detection of strings will fail whenever you determine the messages dynamically. Examples where the command will fail are:


// string cannot be detected: no string literal used
echo __($message);

// string cannot be detected: Use format string instead
echo __('Hello' + $name);
// string literal without using translation filter
UIkit.notify('Item deleted');

Sometimes, you cannot avoid these cases because you have to determine a string dynamically during run-time. The recommended solution for this issue is to locate a file languages/messages.php inside of your extension which contains all strings to be found by the translate command.


__('Message One');
__('Message Two');
_c('{0} %count% Files|one: File|more %count% File', 0);

With the created messages.pot, you can now create translations for your extension. You can either create translations manually with a tool like poEdit or you also make use of Transifex.

The finished translation files have to be located in the languages folder of your extension, i.e. in languages/de_DE/.

How a locale is determined

When the Installer is run, the locale is selected manually. This can later be changed in the Pagekit admin panel (System / Localization). You can set a different locale for frontend and admin panel.

You can only select languages that are available for the system extension.

Working with message domains

The __(...) / _c(...) functions and the trans/ transChoice filters have a third parameter to set a domain. The default domain is called messages, which is why we have been dealing with messages.* files so far. All extensions share their strings in this domain. That is why strings translated by the system extension can be used right away without the need to translate them again. This includes common terms like Save, Error or the name of a month.

Indeed, when we called ./pagekit extension:translate hello earlier, the resulting messages.pot did not include any of the system's messages, even if they occurred in the Hello extension.

There might be the case when you do not want to share messages from the default domain. Just set your own domain and regenerate the *.pot files. You can do this for individual strings or set the parameter on all strings to keep your localization completely separate from the system.

$msg = __("Hello Universe", [], "hello");