Localizing Kubernetes documentation
This page shows you how to localize the docs for a different language.
Contribute to an existing localization
You can help add or improve the content of an existing localization. In Kubernetes Slack, you can find a channel for each localization. There is also a general SIG Docs Localizations Slack channel where you can say hello.
Find your two-letter language code
First, consult the
ISO 639-1 standard
to find your localization's two-letter language code. For example, the two-letter code for
Some languages use a lowercase version of the country code as defined by the
ISO-3166 along with their language codes. For example, the Brazilian Portuguese
language code is
Fork and clone the repo
Then, clone your fork and
cd into it:
git clone https://github.com/<username>/website cd website
The website content directory includes subdirectories for each language. The
localization you want to help out with is inside
Create or update your chosen localized page based on the English original. See localize content for more details.
If you notice a technical inaccuracy or other problem with the upstream (English) documentation, you should fix the upstream documentation first and then repeat the equivalent fix by updating the localization you're working on.
Limit changes in a pull requests to a single localization. Reviewing pull requests that change content in multiple localizations is problematic.
Follow Suggesting Content Improvements to propose changes to that localization. The process is similar to proposing changes to the upstream (English) content.
Start a new localization
If you want the Kubernetes documentation localized into a new language, here's what you need to do.
Because contributors can't approve their own pull requests, you need at least two contributors to begin a localization.
All localization teams must be self-sufficient. The Kubernetes website is happy to host your work, but it's up to you to translate it and keep existing localized content current.
You'll need to know the two-letter language code for your language. Consult the
ISO 639-1 standard
to find your localization's two-letter language code. For example, the
two-letter code for Korean is
If the language you are starting a localization for is spoken in various places
with significant differences between the variants, it might make sense to
combine the lowercased ISO-3166 country code with the language two-letter code.
For example, Brazilian Portuguese is localized as
When you start a new localization, you must localize all the minimum required content before the Kubernetes project can publish your changes to the live website.
SIG Docs can help you work on a separate branch so that you can incrementally work towards that goal.
Let Kubernetes SIG Docs know you're interested in creating a localization! Join the SIG Docs Slack channel and the SIG Docs Localizations Slack channel. Other localization teams are happy to help you get started and answer your questions.
Please also consider participating in the SIG Docs Localization Subgroup meeting. The mission of the SIG Docs localization subgroup is to work across the SIG Docs localization teams to collaborate on defining and documenting the processes for creating localized contribution guides. In addition, the SIG Docs localization subgroup looks for opportunities to create and share common tools across localization teams and identify new requirements for the SIG Docs Leadership team. If you have questions about this meeting, please inquire on the SIG Docs Localizations Slack channel.
You can also create a Slack channel for your localization in the
kubernetes/community repository. For an example of adding a Slack channel, see
the PR for adding a channel for Persian.
Join the Kubernetes GitHub organization
When you've opened a localization PR, you can become members of the Kubernetes
GitHub organization. Each person on the team needs to create their own
Organization Membership Request
Add your localization team in GitHub
@kubernetes/sig-docs-**-owners can approve PRs that change content
within (and only within) your localization directory:
/content/**/. For each
@kubernetes/sig-docs-**-reviews team automates review
assignments for new PRs. Members of
@kubernetes/website-maintainers can create
new localization branches to coordinate translation efforts. Members of
@kubernetes/website-milestone-maintainers can use the
Prow command to assign a milestone to issues or PRs.
Configure the workflow
Next, add a GitHub label for your localization in the
repository. A label lets you filter issues and pull requests for your specific
For an example of adding a label, see the PR for adding the Italian language label.
Modify the site configuration
The Kubernetes website uses Hugo as its web framework. The website's Hugo
configuration resides in the
file. You'll need to modify
hugo.toml to support a new localization.
Add a configuration block for the new language to
hugo.toml under the
[languages] block. The German block, for example, looks like:
[languages.de] title = "Kubernetes" description = "Produktionsreife Container-Verwaltung" languageName = "Deutsch (German)" languageNameLatinScript = "Deutsch" contentDir = "content/de" weight = 8
The language selection bar lists the value for
languageName. Assign "language
name in native script and language (English language name in Latin script)" to
languageName. For example,
languageName = "한국어 (Korean)" or
languageName = "Deutsch (German)".
languageNameLatinScript can be used to access the language name in Latin
script and use it in the theme. Assign "language name in latin script" to
languageNameLatinScript. For example,
languageNameLatinScript ="Korean" or
languageNameLatinScript = "Deutsch".
When assigning a
weight parameter for your block, find the language block with
the highest weight and add 1 to that value.
For more information about Hugo's multilingual support, see "Multilingual Mode".
Add a new localization directory
Add a language-specific subdirectory to the
content folder in
the repository. For example, the two-letter code for German is
You also need to create a directory inside
localized strings; look at existing localizations
for an example. To use these new strings, you must also create a symbolic link
i18n/<localization>.toml to the actual string configuration in
data/i18n/<localization>/<localization>.toml (remember to commit the symbolic
For example, for German the strings live in
i18n/de.toml is a symbolic link to
Localize the community code of conduct
Open a PR against the
repository to add the code of conduct in your language.
Set up the OWNERS files
To set the roles of each user contributing to the localization, create an
OWNERS file inside the language-specific subdirectory with:
- reviewers: A list of kubernetes teams with reviewer roles, in this case,
sig-docs-**-reviewsteam created in Add your localization team in GitHub.
- approvers: A list of kubernetes teams with approvers roles, in this case,
sig-docs-**-ownersteam created in Add your localization team in GitHub.
- labels: A list of GitHub labels to automatically apply to a PR, in this case, the language label created in Configure the workflow.
More information about the
OWNERS file can be found at
The Spanish OWNERS file, with
es, looks like this:
# See the OWNERS docs at https://go.k8s.io/owners # This is the localization project for Spanish. # Teams and members are visible at https://github.com/orgs/kubernetes/teams. reviewers: - sig-docs-es-reviews approvers: - sig-docs-es-owners labels: - language/es
After adding the language-specific
OWNERS file, update the root
OWNERS_ALIASES file with the new
Kubernetes teams for the localization,
For each team, add the list of GitHub users requested in Add your localization team in GitHub, in alphabetical order.
--- a/OWNERS_ALIASES +++ b/OWNERS_ALIASES @@ -48,6 +48,14 @@ aliases: - stewart-yu - xiangpengzhao - zhangxiaoyu-zidif + sig-docs-es-owners: # Admins for Spanish content + - alexbrand + - raelga + sig-docs-es-reviews: # PR reviews for Spanish content + - alexbrand + - electrocucaracha + - glo-pena + - raelga sig-docs-fr-owners: # Admins for French content - perriea - remyleone
Open a pull request
For an example of adding a new localization, see the PR to enable docs in French.
Add a localized README file
To guide other localization contributors, add a new
README-**.md to the top
level of kubernetes/website, where
** is the two-letter language code. For example, a German README file would be
Guide localization contributors in the localized
Include the same information contained in
README.md as well as:
- A point of contact for the localization project
- Any information specific to the localization
After you create the localized README, add a link to the file from the main
README.md, and include contact information in English. You can provide
a GitHub ID, email address, Slack channel, or another
method of contact. You must also provide a link to your localized Community Code
Launch your new localization
When a localization meets the requirements for workflow and minimum output, SIG Docs does the following:
- Enables language selection on the website.
- Publicizes the localization's availability through Cloud Native Computing Foundation(CNCF) channels, including the Kubernetes blog.
Localizing all the Kubernetes documentation is an enormous task. It's okay to start small and expand over time.
Minimum required content
At a minimum, all localizations must include:
|Home||All heading and subheading URLs|
|Setup||All heading and subheading URLs|
|Tutorials||Kubernetes Basics, Hello Minikube|
|Site strings||All site strings in a new localized TOML file|
|Releases||All heading and subheading URLs|
Translated documents must reside in their own
content/**/ subdirectory, but otherwise, follow the
same URL path as the English source. For example, to prepare the
Kubernetes Basics tutorial for translation into German,
create a subfolder under the
content/de/ folder and copy the English source:
mkdir -p content/de/docs/tutorials cp content/en/docs/tutorials/kubernetes-basics.md content/de/docs/tutorials/kubernetes-basics.md
Translation tools can speed up the translation process. For example, some editors offer plugins to quickly translate text.
To ensure accuracy in grammar and meaning, members of your localization team should carefully review all machine-generated translations before publishing.
Localize SVG images
The Kubernetes project recommends using vector (SVG) images where possible, as these are much easier for a localization team to edit. If you find a raster image that needs localizing, consider first redrawing the English version as a vector image, and then localize that.
When translating text within SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) images, it's essential to follow certain guidelines to ensure accuracy and maintain consistency across different language versions. SVG images are commonly used in the Kubernetes documentation to illustrate concepts, workflows, and diagrams.
Identifying translatable text: Start by identifying the text elements within the SVG image that need to be translated. These elements typically include labels, captions, annotations, or any text that conveys information.
Editing SVG files: SVG files are XML-based, which means they can be edited using a text editor. However, it's important to note that most of the documentation images in Kubernetes already convert text to curves to avoid font compatibility issues. In such cases, it is recommended to use specialized SVG editing software, such as Inkscape, for editing, open the SVG file and locate the text elements that require translation.
Translating the text: Replace the original text with the translated version in the desired language. Ensure the translated text accurately conveys the intended meaning and fits within the available space in the image. The Open Sans font family should be used when working with languages that use the Latin alphabet. You can download the Open Sans typeface from here: Open Sans Typeface.
Converting text to curves: As already mentioned, to address font compatibility issues, it is recommended to convert the translated text to curves or paths. Converting text to curves ensures that the final image displays the translated text correctly, even if the user's system does not have the exact font used in the original SVG.
Reviewing and testing: After making the necessary translations and converting text to curves, save and review the updated SVG image to ensure the text is properly displayed and aligned. Check Preview your changes locally.
Localizations must be based on the English files from a specific release targeted by the localization team. Each localization team can decide which release to target, referred to as the target version below.
To find source files for your target version:
Navigate to the Kubernetes website repository at https://github.com/kubernetes/website.
Select a branch for your target version from the following table:
main branch holds content for the current release
The release team creates a
release-1.28 branch before the next
Site strings in i18n
Localizations must include the contents of
in a new language-specific file. Using German as an example:
Add a new localization directory and file to
data/i18n/. For example, with
mkdir -p data/i18n/de cp data/i18n/en/en.toml data/i18n/de/de.toml
Revise the comments at the top of the file to suit your localization, then translate the value of each string. For example, this is the German-language placeholder text for the search form:
[ui_search_placeholder] other = "Suchen"
Localizing site strings lets you customize site-wide text and features: for example, the legal copyright text in the footer on each page.
Language-specific localization guide
As a localization team, you can formalize the best practices your team follows by creating a language-specific localization guide.
For example, see the Korean Localization Guide, which includes content on the following subjects:
- Sprint cadence and releases
- Branch strategy
- Pull request workflow
- Style guide
- Glossary of localized and non-localized terms
- Markdown conventions
- Kubernetes API object terminology
Language-specific Zoom meetings
If the localization project needs a separate meeting time, contact a SIG Docs Co-Chair or Tech Lead to create a new reoccurring Zoom meeting and calendar invite. This is only needed when the team is large enough to sustain and require a separate meeting.
Per CNCF policy, the localization teams must upload their meetings to the SIG Docs YouTube playlist. A SIG Docs Co-Chair or Tech Lead can help with the process until SIG Docs automates it.
Because localization projects are highly collaborative efforts, we encourage teams to work in shared localization branches - especially when starting out and the localization is not yet live.
To collaborate on a localization branch:
We recommend the following branch naming scheme:
dev-<source version>-<language code>.<team milestone>
For example, an approver on a German localization team opens the localization branch
dev-1.12-de.1directly against the
kubernetes/websiterepository, based on the source branch for Kubernetes v1.12.
Individual contributors open feature branches based on the localization branch.
For example, a German contributor opens a pull request with changes to
Approvers review and merge feature branches into the localization branch.
Periodically, an approver merges the localization branch with its source branch by opening and approving a new pull request. Be sure to squash the commits before approving the pull request.
Repeat steps 1-4 as needed until the localization is complete. For example,
subsequent German localization branches would be:
Teams must merge localized content into the same branch from which the content was sourced. For example:
- A localization branch sourced from
mainmust be merged into
- A localization branch sourced from
release-1.27must be merged into
mainbranch, but it is not merged into
mainbefore the new release branch
release-1.28created, merge it into both
mainand new release branch
release-1.28. To merge your localization branch into the new release branch
release-1.28, you need to switch the upstream branch of your localization branch to
At the beginning of every team milestone, it's helpful to open an issue comparing upstream changes between the previous localization branch and the current localization branch. There are two scripts for comparing upstream changes.
upstream_changes.pyis useful for checking the changes made to a specific file. And
diff_l10n_branches.pyis useful for creating a list of outdated files for a specific localization branch.
While only approvers can open a new localization branch and merge pull requests, anyone can open a pull request for a new localization branch. No special permissions are required.
For more information about working from forks or directly from the repository, see "fork and clone the repo".
SIG Docs welcomes upstream contributions and corrections to the English source.