Developing a MVC Component/Adding language management

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This tutorial is part of the Developing a Model-View-Controller (MVC) Component for Joomla!1.6 tutorial. You are encouraged to read the previous parts of the tutorial before reading this.

Joomla!1.6 manages languages for components in four different situations:

  • displaying a component in the public site
  • managing a component in the backend
  • managing menus in the backend
  • installing a component (new in 1.6)

Joomla!1.6 uses two different location folder for languages:

  • one in administrator/language or language
  • one in the component folder (administrator/component/*component*/language or component/*component*/language)

It depends how the component is installed.

Adding language translation in the public site

With your favorite file manager and editor, put a file site/language/en-GB/en-GB.com_helloworld.ini. This file will contain translation for the public part. For the moment, this file is empty



For the moment, there are no translations strings in this file.

Adding language translation when managing the component

With your favorite file manager and editor, put a file admin/language/en-GB/en-GB.com_helloworld.ini. This file will contain translation for the backend part.


COM_HELLOWORLD_HELLOWORLD_FIELD_MSG_DESC="This message will be displayed"

Adding language translation when managing the menus in the backend

With your favorite file manager and editor, put a file admin/language/en-GB/en-GB.com_helloworld.sys.ini. This file will contain translation for the backend part.


COM_HELLOWORLD_DESC="This is the Hello World description"
COM_HELLOWORLD_HELLOWORLD_VIEW_DEFAULT_DESC="This view displays a selected message"

Adding translation when installing the component

With your favorite file manager and editor, put a file language/en-GB/en-GB.ini. This file will contain translation for the install.


; Joomla16.Tutorials
; Copyright (C) 2005 - 2009 Open Source Matters. All rights reserved.
; License GNU General Public License version 2 or later; see LICENSE.txt, see LICENSE.php
; Note : All ini files need to be saved as UTF-8 - No BOM
COM_HELLOWORLD_DESCRIPTION="This is the Hello World description"

The COM_HELLOWORLD_DESCRIPTION can be used in the helloworld.xml file

Packaging the component

Content of your code directory

Create a compressed file of this directory or directly download the archive and install it using the extension manager of Joomla!1.6. You can add a menu item of this component using the menu manager in the backend.


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<extension type="component" version="1.6.0" method="upgrade">
	<name>Hello World!</name>
	<creationDate>November 2009</creationDate>
	<author>John Doe</author>
	<copyright>Copyright Info</copyright>
	<license>License Info</license>
	<install> <!-- Runs on install -->
			<file driver="mysql" charset="utf8">sql/install.mysql.utf8.sql</file>
	<uninstall> <!-- Runs on uninstall -->
			<file driver="mysql" charset="utf8">sql/uninstall.mysql.utf8.sql</file>
	<update> <!-- Runs on update -->
			<schemapath type="mysql">sql/updates/mysql</schemapath>
	<files folder="site">
		<menu>Hello World!</menu>
		<files folder="admin">
		<languages folder="admin">
			<language tag="en-GB">language/en-GB/en-GB.com_helloworld.ini</language>
			<language tag="en-GB">language/en-GB/en-GB.com_helloworld.sys.ini</language>

In this helloworld.xml file, languages are installed in:

  • administrator/language for the admin part (look at the xml languages tag)
  • components/com_helloworld/language for the site part (there are no xml languages tag in the site part of the xml description file, but the language folder is included)


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