msgcomm - match two message catalogs

NAME  SYNOPSIS  DESCRIPTION  Input file location:  Output file location:  Message selection:  Input file syntax:  Output details:  Informative output:  AUTHOR  REPORTING BUGS  COPYRIGHT  SEE ALSO 


msgcomm − match two message catalogs


msgcomm [OPTION] [INPUTFILE]...


Find messages which are common to two or more of the specified PO files. By using the −−more−than option, greater commonality may be requested before messages are printed. Conversely, the −−less−than option may be used to specify less commonality before messages are printed (i.e. −−less−than=2 will only print the unique messages). Translations, comments and extracted comments will be preserved, but only from the first PO file to define them. File positions from all PO files will be cumulated.

Mandatory arguments to long options are mandatory for short options too.

Input file location:


input files

−f, −−files−from=FILE

get list of input files from FILE

−D, −−directory=DIRECTORY

add DIRECTORY to list for input files search

If input file is −, standard input is read.

Output file location:

−o, −−output−file=FILE

write output to specified file

The results are written to standard output if no output file is specified or if it is −.

Message selection:

−<, −−less−than=NUMBER

print messages with less than this many definitions, defaults to infinite if not set

−>, −−more−than=NUMBER

print messages with more than this many definitions, defaults to 1 if not set

−u, −−unique

shorthand for −−less−than=2, requests that only unique messages be printed

Input file syntax:

−P, −−properties−input

input files are in Java .properties syntax


input files are in NeXTstep/GNUstep .strings syntax

Output details:


use colors and other text attributes always


use colors and other text attributes if WHEN. WHEN may be ’always’, ’never’, ’auto’, or ’html’.


specify CSS style rule file for −−color

−e, −−no−escape

do not use C escapes in output (default)

−E, −−escape

use C escapes in output, no extended chars


write PO file even if empty

−i, −−indent

write the .po file using indented style


do not write ’#: filename:line’ lines

−n, −−add−location

generate ’#: filename:line’ lines (default)


write out strict Uniforum conforming .po file

−p, −−properties−output

write out a Java .properties file


write out a NeXTstep/GNUstep .strings file

−w, −−width=NUMBER

set output page width


do not break long message lines, longer than the output page width, into several lines

−s, −−sort−output

generate sorted output

−F, −−sort−by−file

sort output by file location


don’t write header with ’msgid ""’ entry

Informative output:

−h, −−help

display this help and exit

−V, −−version

output version information and exit


Written by Peter Miller.


Report bugs in the bug tracker at <> or by email to <bug−[email protected]>.


Copyright © 1995−2023 Free Software Foundation, Inc. License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later <>
This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it. There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.


The full documentation for msgcomm is maintained as a Texinfo manual. If the info and msgcomm programs are properly installed at your site, the command

info msgcomm

should give you access to the complete manual.

Updated 2024-01-29 - |