XLIFF is a standardized format for localization, specifically designed for interoperability among translation tools. In memoQ, XLIFF is fully supported as a bilingual document format: memoQ users can work on XLIFF documents created in other tools, or export documents from memoQ into XLIFF format for processing in other tools that sufficiently support the XLIFF format.  In many cases, XLIFF enables memoQ users to take part in projects not prepared using memoQ, and allows users of other tools to work in projects that were prepared in memoQ. memoQ currently supports version 1.2 of the XLIFF standard.

In addition to segments of source text and their translations, XLIFF files can contain additional information about the document and its segments. XLIFF files created in memoQ contain all the significant information like locked segments, comments, etc. XLIFF files created in other tools will typically hold similar pieces of information. However, not all of this information is always available after an XLIFF file has been transferred from memoQ to another tool or vice versa. On the one hand, this depends on the level of XLIFF support of the other tool. On the other hand, some of this information can be stored in so called extensions: XLIFF is an extensible format that can store proprietary information that is specific to one translation tool and is not automatically available to other tools.

Note: XLIFF files can also contain matches from a translation memory for the segments of the document(s) contained: these matches are currently ignored by memoQ.

Translating or editing XLIFF files from other tools in memoQ

You can use memoQ to translate or edit existing XLIFF files. These are files that are created from original monolingual documents in other translation tools. These XLIFF files can be imported into memoQ using the Add document or Add document as command, and can be exported back to the original XLIFF format using the Export (dialog) or Export (stored path) command.

Note: Do not use the Export bilingual command to export the XLIFF file in this case. It will create another flavor of XLIFF: a memoQ specific XLIFF file that is designed to be translated or otherwise processed in other tools.

Note: Real-time preview is not currently available when translating XLIFF files.

Note: When working with XLIFF documents it is recommended to choose the Show Filtered Inline Tags option. This way only those attributes will be displayed that are useful for the translator and disturbingly long tags can be avoided.

Exporting bilingual XLIFF files from memoQ

In many cases, memoQ users need to cooperate with users of other translation software products. For example, you might want to have your translated document proofread by a non memoQ user. Or a project manager might need to work in a team where some of the translators cannot currently use memoQ. If those colleagues of yours use an XLIFF compatible translation tool, the translation documents can be exported into XLIFF format, and handed out to the non memoQ translator or proofreader. To create the XLIFF file, click the Export bilingual command, and choose the XLIFF option. When the finished work is received, you can “merge” the translated or proofread segments back into the memoQ translation document by selecting it in the document list and clicking the Import/update bilingual command.

Note: When exporting XLIFF files, you are faced with a couple of choices. If you are exporting several files, you can export them into a single XLIFF file or several. You can choose to include the skeleton, in which case you will not need the original project or translation document at hand to be able to receive the finished XLIFF file. You can also choose to save the XLIFF file to a compressed ZIP container file with the XLZ file extension.

Important: If you want users of SDL Trados 2007 or older to translate XLIFF files created by memoQ, copy source to target where empty before exporting into XLIFF.