Submitting & Retrieving Content

Application Files and Business Documents

Account Owners and Project Managers can use this feature. Requestors should read this article.
Available in the Pro, Business, and Enterprise plans.

Looking for supported file types and formatting guidance? See the Supported File Types article.

Upload Files

To upload application resource files and business documents for translation:

  1. Go to Projects > Content > Files.
  2. Click Upload File. You can also drag and drop files directly onto the page.

If there's an error with uploading a file, you'll see an error message:

  • Ambiguous file type: Smartling analyzes the file and attempts to determine the type, but you may need to set the file type manually.
  • A file with the same name already exists: You have the option to overwrite the existing file or cancel the upload.
  • The file type is not supported: See Smartling’s supported file types.

Once your files have finished uploading, select the file(s) and click Request Translation. You'll be prompted to add your file to an existing job or add it to a new job, as well as select the desired languages for translation. 

The Jobs Dashboard will appear, and from here, you'll be able to authorize a job and get a cost estimate.

Edit Files

Once you've uploaded a file for translation, you might want to rename it, add file instructions, download the original file, etc. To do this:

  1. Go to Projects (select a project) > Content > Files.
  2. Use filters to retrieve your file.
  3. In the Actions column, click the more icon next to the Download button for your file.
  4. Select from one of the following options:
    • View translation files
    • Rename file
    • Delete file
    • Update file
    • Add file instructions
    • View API (will show you the upload/download cURL commands)

In Dashboard Content Capture

It is recommended to upload content for translation using a file, so the translations can be downloaded from Smartling. For cases where the string you need to translate does not yet exist in a file, you can add a string manually in the Authorization queue:

  1. Go to Translations > Awaiting Authorization
  2. Click + Add a String
  3. Type the text of the string you need translated in the text box. The text box does support inline markup, such as <br>.The text and markup of the string must match exactly with what is published to your source site in order for the translation to be matched and served to end users.
  4. Click Add
  5. Authorize the string for translation

Strings that were added manually using the In Dashboard feature, can be located by searching for URL path /Strings.


  • Strings added via the In Dashboard method will not have context.
  • Translations will not be available for download in a file. You will have to copy/paste translations into your destination system.

Download Translated Files

Smartling allows you to download translated files, individually, or as multiple files all at once. You can also download your file by specific language if not all languages are needed.

  1. Go to Content > Files and click the checkbox for each file you'd like to download.
  2. Click the Actions drop down menu and select Download Selected.
  3. Select a download option then click Download. Download options include:
  • Original file: This is an exact copy of the uploaded source file.
  • Pseudo translations: Contains source strings with added characters where translations would apply. (See note below for more information.)
  • Instrumented file for context: This is a modified version of the original file with each string wrapped in invisible unicode characters generated from the string's hashcode.
  • Current translations: This contains all of the current saved translations for the file regardless of the workflow step in which the string is located.
  • Published translations only: All published translations, including pre-published translations. Pre-published strings are still not yet complete but will be recognized as published when downloaded or on a GDN site. Pre-publishing is useful if you want to get translations live as soon as possible but still want the option to edit them later before the translation is finalized.

Pseudo Translations
Translating a string can often make it longer, which can cause UI problems if the translation doesn’t fit the available space. Smartling gives you the option of downloading a file with "pseudo translations", which are simply the original strings with added characters, to increase the length of each string. Pseudo translations allow you to test your UI’s tolerance for longer strings without having to wait for the translation to be completed. By default, downloading pseudo translations increases the length of the original strings by 30 percent.

You can control the degree of text expansion in pseudo translations by including a directive in your file.

Download Translated Files by Language

  1. Go to Content > Files and click on the file.
  2. You’ll see a list of files by language. Click Download on the language of your choice and select your download option.

Delete a File

There may be occasions when you need to delete a file. For example, if the file is no longer needed or the wrong file was uploaded. Deleted files are no longer available for download, but completed translations remain available for use. 

When content is deleted, strings become inactive. Click here to find out more about how inactive strings are handled.

To delete a single file:

  1. Go to Projects (select a project) > Content > Files.
  2. Find the file you wish to delete, then click the more icon and select Delete File. A pop up window will prompt you to confirm the action.

To delete multiple files:

  1. Go to Projects (select a project) > Content > Files.
  2. Click the checkboxes for all the files you wish to delete.
  3. Click the Actions drop down menu and select Delete Files. A pop up window will prompt you to confirm the action.


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