SharePoint Stream

A wide-ranging SharePoint study guide focused to IT Consultants

Design for localization and globalization

This objective may include but is not limited to: use and implementation of resource files, variations (content creation and workflow, multilingual content), selecting locales, date and time, regional settings, RTL vs. LTR

Resource files

For web content on Intranet and public Internet sites, it is sometimes very important that the content be localized, depending on the person looking at the web page; you can expect that someone from Germany will only read German, whereas a Brazilian will read only Portuguese.

There is a OOTB localization method on SharePoint, right inside the Welcome.ascx control that shows the username logged on. If you have language packs installed on your WFE server and you enabled those languages on your web site, you’ll have the choice of selecting the site’s language, and what this really do is to change the Thread.CurrentThread.CurrentUICulture property’s value. Expect having for example the value 1033 for en-US, or 1046 for pt-BR.

Now that you know what happens in SharePoint, you can shape your content to have the correct values according to the language set. In the case of SharePoint features, you are free to build resource files (.resx) and to add them either on the assembly or on the 14 directory. You can implement this “localization” concept everywhere on your features, including on their description, title, and the controls in your Web Part (labels, etc).


Many companies operate globally, and even in their home markets they often must appeal to a diverse customer base that speaks multiple languages. This diversity often requires that their Web presence sites be customized for markets of different cultures and geographic regions.

Maintaining many similar versions, or variations, of a Web presence site is difficult and time-consuming because of the need to coordinate the creation and updating of content among all of the different variations.

To simplify this process, SPS 2010 provides a site variation management system. Site managers can define a series of site variations and mark one variation as the primary variation. This ensures that changes made in the sources are properly reconciled in all other variations. This system is integrated with workflow and content import or export to enable integration with third-party translation services. New updates to target variations can use the workflow system to automatically send updates for translation. When translation is completed, updates can be imported and set for final approval through the workflow system.

Variations can be used for publishing related sites or pages, either for use in multilingual content or for device targeting.

Locales, date and time, regional settings

SharePoint sites are designed to be used throughout an organization. As a result, there are times when a site created within SharePoint is primarily used by individuals in time zones other than where the SharePoint server is located. An example of this is a team located in California using a SharePoint site to manage the resources for a project, but the SharePoint servers are located in the company’s New York office. When this is the case, site managers may wish to update the regional settings on the site so that details, such as date and time, are displayed based on the users’ locale instead of the location of the server.


Right-to-left (RTL) orientation and left-to-right (LTR) orientation of text changes according to the Language the user choose on the Language selector.

By default, most language files are installed on the Windows Server 2008 operating system. However, you must install supplemental language files for East Asian languages and languages that use complex script or require right-to-left orientations. The East Asian languages include Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. The complex script and right-to-left oriented languages include Arabic, Armenian, Georgian, Hebrew, the Indic languages, Thai, and Vietnamese. Instructions for installing these supplemental language files are provided in the following procedure.

It is recommend that you install these language files only if you must have them. The East Asian files require about 230 megabytes of hard disk space. The complex script and right-to-left languages do not use much disk space, but installing either set of files might decrease performance when you enter text.

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One response to “Design for localization and globalization

  1. Pingback: Study guide to the exam 70-576: Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Designing and Developing « SharePoint Stream

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