Merging translations from CrowdIn

CrowdIn automatically syncs the gitlab.pot file with the CrowdIn service, presenting newly added externalized strings to the community of translators.

GitLab CrowdIn Bot also creates merge requests to take newly approved translation submissions and merge them into the locale/<language>/gitlab.po files. Check the merge requests created by gitlab-crowdin-bot to see new and merged merge requests.


By default CrowdIn commits translations with [skip ci] in the commit message. This is done to avoid a bunch of pipelines being run. Before merging translations, make sure to trigger a pipeline to validate translations, we have static analysis validating things CrowdIn doesn’t do. Create a new pipeline at (need Developer access permissions) for the master-i18n branch.

If there are validation errors, the easiest solution is to disapprove the offending string in CrowdIn, leaving a comment with what is required to fix the offense. There is an issue suggesting to automate this process. Disapproving excludes the invalid translation, the merge request is then updated within a few minutes.

If the translation has failed validation due to angle brackets < or > it should be disapproved on CrowdIn as our strings should be using variables for HTML instead.

It might be handy to pause the integration on the CrowdIn side for a little while so translations don’t keep coming. This can be done by clicking Pause sync on the CrowdIn integration settings page.

Merging translations

After all translations are determined to be appropriate and the pipelines pass, you can merge the translations into the default branch. When merging translations, be sure to select the Remove source branch check box, which causes CrowdIn to recreate the master-i18n from the default branch after merging the new translation.

We are discussing automating this entire process.

Recreate the merge request

CrowdIn creates a new merge request as soon as the old one is closed or merged. But it does not recreate the master-i18n branch every time. To force CrowdIn to recreate the branch, close any open merge request and delete the master-18n.

This might be needed when the merge request contains failures that have been fixed on the default branch.

Recreate the GitLab integration in CrowdIn

noteThese instructions work only for GitLab Team Members.

If for some reason the GitLab integration in CrowdIn doesn’t exist, you can recreate it with the following steps:

  1. Sign in to GitLab as gitlab-crowdin-bot. (If you’re a GitLab Team Member, find credentials in the GitLab shared 1Password account.)
  2. Sign in to CrowdIn with the GitLab integration.
  3. Go to Settings > Integrations > GitLab > Set Up Integration.
  4. Select the gitlab-org/gitlab repository.
  5. In Select Branches for Translation, select master.
  6. Ensure the Service Branch Name is master-i18n.

Manually update the translation levels

There’s no automated way to pull the translation levels from CrowdIn, to display this information in the language selection dropdown. Therefore, the translation levels are hard-coded in the TRANSLATION_LEVELS constant in i18n.rb, and must be regularly updated.