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RESX Synchronizer

, 12 Oct 2006 GPL3
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A tool for synchronizing multilanguage .NET Resource files.

Sample Image - ResxSync.jpg

Introduction

An ASP.NET project I'm working on requires localization in different languages. It's nice to use .NET Resource files (.resx), because they are really integrated with the framework and you do not have to worry about explicitly managing the resources. Resource files are, though, really un-maintainable. When you edit the resource files in Visual Studio, ore use the "Generate Local Resources" function, it only updates the default language resources. For example, the file Default.aspx.resx, and not all the translated files, for example, Default.aspx.it-IT.resx. This is obviously a big problem, since you have to update them one by one, manually. RESX Synchronizer allows you to synchronize resource files, adding new keys and removing the deleted ones. It also processes a set of resource files, the "master" file, and all its translated "brothers".

How it Works

This tool uses the two classes System.Resources.ResXResourceReader and System.Resources.ResXResourceWriter, contained in the assembly System.Windows.Forms.dll. These classes allow to read and write .resx files, including comments.

We'll use the name of "source file" to indicate the "master" resource file, for example, Default.aspx.resx, and the name of "destination file" to indicate a "brother" resource file, for example, Default.aspx.it-IT.resx, which must be synchronized. The tool must perform two operations in order to get the files synchronized:

  1. Compare the two files, finding new keys to be added to the "destination" file.
  2. Compare the two files, finding deleted keys to be removed from the "destination" file.

The core of the tool is the class Synchronizer. Its code is reported here, and the concepts behind it are explained below.

public class Synchronizer {

    string sourceFile, destinationFile;

    public Synchronizer(string sFile, string dFile) {
        sourceFile = sFile;
        destinationFile = dFile;
    }

    public void SyncronizeResources(bool backup,
                 bool addOnly, bool verbose,
                 out int added,out int removed) {
        added = 0;
        removed = 0;
        if(backup) {
            string destDir = Path.GetDirectoryName(destinationFile);
            string file = Path.GetFileName(destinationFile);
            File.Copy(destinationFile, destDir + 
                      "\\Backup of " + file, true);
        }

        string tempFile = Path.GetDirectoryName(destinationFile) + 
                                                "\\__TempOutput.resx";

        // Load files in memory
        MemoryStream sourceStream = new MemoryStream(), 
                     destinationStream = new MemoryStream();
        FileStream fs;
        int read;
        byte[] buffer = new byte[1024];

        fs = new FileStream(sourceFile, FileMode.Open, 
                            FileAccess.Read, FileShare.Read);
        read = 0;
        do {
            read = fs.Read(buffer, 0, buffer.Length);
            sourceStream.Write(buffer, 0, read);
        } while(read > 0);
        fs.Close();

        fs = new FileStream(destinationFile, FileMode.Open, 
                            FileAccess.Read, FileShare.Read);
        read = 0;
        do {
            read = fs.Read(buffer, 0, buffer.Length);
            destinationStream.Write(buffer, 0, read);
        } while(read > 0);
        fs.Close();

        sourceStream.Position = 0;
        destinationStream.Position = 0;

        // Create resource readers
        ResXResourceReader source = new ResXResourceReader(sourceStream);
	// Enable support for Data Nodes, important for the comments
	source.UseResXDataNodes = true;
        ResXResourceReader destination = 
                           new ResXResourceReader(destinationStream);
	destination.UseResXDataNodes = true;
        
        // Create resource writer
        if(File.Exists(tempFile)) File.Delete(tempFile);
        ResXResourceWriter writer = new ResXResourceWriter(tempFile);

        // Compare source and destination:
        // for each key in source, check if it is present in destination
        //    if not, add to the output
        // for each key in destination, check if it is present in source
        //    if so, add it to the output

        // Find new keys and add them to the output
        foreach(DictionaryEntry d in source) {
            bool found = false;
            foreach(DictionaryEntry dd in destination) {
                if(d.Key.ToString().Equals(dd.Key.ToString())) {
                    // Found key
                    found = true;
                    break;
                }
            }
            if(!found) {
                // Add the key
		ResXDataNode node = d.Value as ResXDataNode;
                writer.AddResource(node);
                added++;
                if(verbose) {
                    Console.WriteLine("Added new key '" + d.Key.ToString() +
                                      "' with value '" + 
                                      d.Value.ToString() + "'\n");
                }
            }
        }

        if(addOnly) {
            foreach(DictionaryEntry d in destination) {
                ResXDataNode node = d.Value as ResXDataNode;
                writer.AddResource(node);
            }
        }
        else {
            int tot = 0;
            int rem = 0;
            // Find un-deleted keys and add them to the output
            foreach(DictionaryEntry d in destination) {
                bool found = false;
                tot++;
                foreach(DictionaryEntry dd in source) {
                    if(d.Key.ToString().Equals(dd.Key.ToString())) {
                        // Found key
                        found = true;
                    }
                }
                if(found) {
                    // Add the key
                    ResXDataNode node = d.Value as ResXDataNode;
                    writer.AddResource(node);
                    rem++;
                }
                else if(verbose) {
                    Console.WriteLine("Removed deleted key '" + 
                                      d.Key.ToString() + 
                                      "' with value '" + 
                                      d.Value.ToString() + "'\n");
                }
            }
            removed = tot - rem;
        }

        source.Close();
        destination.Close();
        writer.Close();

        // Copy tempFile into destinationFile
        File.Copy(tempFile, destinationFile, true);
        File.Delete(tempFile);
    }

}

The two operations described above are implemented in the two foreach cycles. The first one iterates over the source keys, searching for keys with the same name in the destination. If no key is found, then the current key in the source file is new, and must be added to the output (destination) file. The second cycle iterates over the destination keys, searching for keys with the same name in the source. If a key with the same name is found in the source file, then the key is still needed, and then it must be copied to the output. If no key is found, then that key has been deleted and therefore it is not copied to the output.

The Synchronizer class is also able to:

  • Create a backup copy of the destination file before modifying it
  • Add only new keys, without removing the deleted keys
  • Display in the console each added and removed key
  • Return to the caller the number of added and deleted keys

The Command-Line Tool

The Synchronizer class has been wrapped into a command-line tool, which parses the parameters and performs the synchronization using the class. The code of this utility is really simple, and therefore does not need to be reported.

Usage of the Command-Line Tool

Since the tool is still in a development stage, I don't want to report here the usage instructions which might be obsolete in a few days, so I point you to the official page of the tool, available at this address.

History

  • 2006/10/12 - Version 1.1: support for comments added
  • 2006/09/25 - Initial version

License

This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The GNU General Public License (GPLv3)

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About the Author

Dario Solera

Italy Italy
Software Development Manager working on IaaS cloud computing. Cloud believer, (former) entrepreneur, F1 addict.
 
Follow me at dariosolera.it or on Twitter.
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Comments and Discussions

 
QuestionThanks for the article and code Pinmemberbrunzefb22-Oct-11 17:48 
Generalfail to sync with 7 PinmemberSimon Clifton Cardenas4-Jan-11 21:50 
GeneralRe: fail to sync with 7 PinmemberDario Solera4-Jan-11 22:00 
Generalhexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character Pinmemberxouth15-Jan-08 7:50 
I cannot get this or the the samples on the Microsoft site to work unless the files are UTF8, which surely defeats the purpose of RESX? It fails at the point of getting the enumerator, with the message "hexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character".
 
I am using streams for the reader constructor as in your sample. Am I missing something really obvious?
GeneralThanks PinmemberMSamini11-Jan-08 4:43 
GeneralProblem with ResXDataNode PinmemberJesperGissel1-May-07 9:45 
GeneralRe: Problem with ResXDataNode PinmemberBiju Narayanan P D31-Jul-07 23:11 
AnswerRe: Problem with ResXDataNode Pinmemberquotequad7-Sep-07 15:30 
GeneralRe: Problem with ResXDataNode PinmemberRobert Kuma27-Feb-08 8:31 
GeneralThank you.. Pinmemberkalyankrishna15-Mar-07 8:13 
QuestionHow to update the resx online? Pinmembermikedepetris17-Oct-06 4:23 
GeneralComments ARE accesible [modified] Pinmemberfdub11-Oct-06 10:00 
GeneralRe: Comments ARE accesible PinmemberDario Solera11-Oct-06 10:04 

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