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From Apache Wiki <>
Subject [Stdcxx Wiki] Update of "LocaleLookup" by TravisVitek
Date Wed, 06 Feb 2008 20:03:38 GMT
Dear Wiki user,

You have subscribed to a wiki page or wiki category on "Stdcxx Wiki" for change notification.

The following page has been changed by TravisVitek:

New page:
= Definitions =

canonical language code: The <language> field is two lowercase characters that represent
the language as defined by [#References ISO-639].

canonical country code: The <COUNTRY> field is two uppercase letters that represent
the country as defined by [#References ISO-3166].

canonical codeset code: The <CODESET> field is a string describing the encoding character
set. For our purposes, the codeset is the preferred MIME name of the codeset as defined by
[#References IANA].

canonical locale name: A complete locale name in the format <language>_<COUNTRY>.<CODESET>.
Each field uses the canonical representation described above. [ex. en_US.ISO-8859-1]

native locale name: The locale name used by the local operating system. [ex. English_United
States.1252, en]

locale locale name: See native locale name.

= Plan =

This page relates to the issue described at
There has been some discussion both on and off the dev@ list about how to proceed. This page
is here to document what has been discussed.

The idea behind the issue is to create some mechanism for querying the list of installed locales,
selecting those that match given criteria.

= Discussion 2008/01/28 =

The idea is to take a regular expression like query string, do a brace expansion to get several
simpler regular expressions, and then search the list of installed locales for matches.

Given a query string 


we would apply brace expansion to get the following list of expressions


Once we have this list of expressions, we would enumerate all of the installed locales, and
then search through them looking for locale names that match one of those regular expressions.
The actual matching would be done using rw_fnmatch().

Every platform has a unique list of locales available. For example, Windows sytems use 'English'
as a language name, but most *nix systems the canonical 'en' or in some cases 'EN'. This problem
exists for the language, country and codeset fields of the locale name. To deal with this,
we need to provide a mapping between the native names and the canonical names that we plan
to use in the query string. It has been suggested that the mapping give a list of all known
native locale names for each canonical locale name. The current suggestion is to provide one
table with a list of all native locale names and the canonical names for all platforms. For
efficiency, it was decided that this table include other information that may be useful such
as MB_CUR_LEN for each of those locales.

When we enumerate the list of installed locales we would use this data to map the locally
installed locale name to the canonical locale name. For lookup purposes we use the canonical
name, and once we've found a match, we provide the native locale name back to the user.

= Issues =

Now that I'm collecting the list of installed locales to build up this table, I've noticed
a few issues with the name mapping. One issue is that a single native locale name may map
to a different canonical locale name on different platforms. For example, `es_BO' maps to
`es_BO.ISO-8859-15' on AIX, but it maps to `es_BO.ISO-8859-1' on Linux and SunOS. Another
issue is that the data associated with each of the canonical locales, like MB_CUR_LEN, is
different on each platform. The ar_DZ.UTF-8 locale uses a 6 byte codeset on Linux, but a 4
byte codeset on other platforms.


I can provide one database per-platform that includes all of the locale information for that
platform. I could write a utility to create this file for each platform. I could even opt
to use this file as the list of installed locales instead of checking the output of `locale
-a'. The disadvantage is that the data would have to be verified or completed manually to
handle mapping native locales names like 'czech' to a canonical name. Maybe we could skip
these? If so, then maybe we could generate this file on the fly before running any tests.

Another option would be to have a seperate mapping for each of the locale name components.
That makes it possible to from 'English' to 'en' or from 'iso88591' to 'ISO-8859-1' so I can
build up the complete canonical locale name with each of the canonical locale name components.
The disadvantage with this is that I may have trouble mapping from locales names like 'czech'
to a single canonical name. Maybe I should skip these?

= References =

discussion []

std-country (ISO-3166) []

std-lang (ISO-639) []

std-codeset []

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