Thursday, October 3, 2013

Quick and Painless Conversion to Bilingual Doc Format with SDL LegIt!

I have posted before about the steps to create a bilingual (or unclean) DOC file.

To use this process, a user needed to have Trados Workbench installed. This was a source of confusion and frustration for many translators, especially for adopters of Studio who never used "the old Trados" and therefore were not familiar with Workbench or didn't have a working Trados 2007 license.

But it looks like thanks to a great little SDL Open Exchange app called LegIt!, Trados Workbench will soon be but a distant memory, at least for this particular process.

Note that SDL LegIt! requires SDL Trados Studio 2014.

The app is extremely simple to use: all it takes is 4 clicks.

1st click:  Choose whether your want to Convert to TTX or Convert to Bilingual Doc

2nd click:  Select your TM
                  * Only TMs in TMW format can be selected here
                  * The source and target languages are automatically populated from the TM
                  * You can still segment a file with no TM (skip this 2nd click). When no TM is selected, you
                     will have to select the source and target languages manually.

3rd click:  Select your document(s)
                  * Only DOC (Word 97-2003 Document) files can be bilingual. If your document has a
                     DOCX extension and you have selected "Convert to Bilingual Doc" the conversion will
                     fail and the file will be converted to TTX instead. Go to MS Word and save as DOC first
                     for successful conversion.

4th click:  Convert
                  * If you forget to do the 1st click and check Convert to Bilingual Doc (or Convert to TTX),
                     nothing will happen when you click Convert, and you won't get an error message, so make
                     sure you have checked either box before clicking the Convert button.

As a final note, keep in mind that this process overwrites your original Word files. However, for each converted file, a .BAK file is added to your original file location. By changing the file extension to .DOC, you will once again have your original, unsegmented source file.


  1. Hi Nora, nice article and really good to see you're making use of this application already. Just a quick comment on your last point though. When you convert the DOC files don't you get a BAK file as well? I do, and this would be exactly the same as for Workbench. So you can just rename the BAK as DOC and you have the original file again.

    1. You're absolutely right, Paul. : )

    2. I've amended the post to reflect this. Thanks!