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Date: Sun, 8 Mar 2015 20:56:36 -0400
From: Rich Felker <>
Subject: Re: libintl: stubs or working functions?

On Sun, Mar 08, 2015 at 04:22:49PM +0700, Рысь wrote:
> > > * If musl can handle that, how I should configure it? Are
> > > environment variables work?
> > 
> > For translations of musl itself (which don't exist yet) the
> > MUSL_LOCPATH environment variable needs to be set. But most programs
> > that use gettext hard-code their own pathnames for passing to
> > bindtextdomain, and this is the documented correct way to use the API.
> > So there is no default gettext path in musl.
> Interesting. Well, than I need to investigate more. strace does not
> show any tryings to find or even to poke at locale data installed by
> application. nm output from binary does not show any "textd" pattern.
> config.log then says NLS is supported via external libintl.a (did I do
> a right thing by creating an empty libintl.a file to redirect libintl
> functions to libc at link time?)

I don't think this should be needed; programs I've seen that use
gettext first see if it's available in libc without any additional -l.

> Probably application thinks it have found libintl, but for some reason
> does not enable it's code.


> > > Whole story and questions may be stupid if I misunderstand the
> > > purpose of those functions, so sorry.
> > 
> > Not stupid at all. Hope the above helps. Let me know if you have any
> > more questions.
> Okay. Sorry, as for now I did not read locale libc code fully and quite
> do not understand it (I am in process of rebuilding my primary desktop
> to move it to my mentioned musl root, that's quite of time consuming).
> Example application of question is email client claws-mail (I even use
> it now to send an email to you, so I can test it). On my system it's
> locale data is stored
> into /local/share/locale/ru/LC_MESSAGES/ On typical glibc
> system I needed to set LC_ALL and LANG environment variables to
> something like "ru_RU.UTF-8". What I should do with musl for _not
> translating musl_, but for (probably) NLS-enabled external application?

Have at least LC_MESSAGES set to "ru". Or if you want to be able to
use "ru_RU", make sure the latter exists in /local/share/locale and
that it's a symlink to "ru".

> And what symbols should I see in nm output for any application to
> verify it actually uses NLS?

bindtextdomain and something containing gettext (probably dgettext or

> > If you find that lack of translations for the messages from musl
> > itself (errno strings, etc.) is a problem, I can try to help you with
> > producing a locale file for musl. I want to get a musl-locales project
> > started and it would be nice to have a trial run-through.
> Thanks I will happy to at least try! You only should prepare exact
> instructions and needed software so I can start work quickly :)
> If I will catch time right I will try to reach you on IRC at least
> within next week.



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