The Developer's Guide to Building Global Windows and Web Applications
by Guy Smith-Ferrier published by Addison-Wesley ISBN 0321341384

Latest News

22 April 2013 - Visual Studio 2012 Source Code now available

10 March 2012 - Visual Studio 2010 Source Code updated

01 September 2010 - Visual Studio 2010 Source Code now available

01 September 2010 - Visual Studio 2008 Source Code updated

26 April 2009 - Visual Studio 2008 Source Code updated

2 Dec 2008 - Visual Studio 2008 Source Code now available

27 Sept 2008 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

31 July 2008 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

3 July 2008 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

26 May 2008 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

20 April 2008 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

3 November 2007 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

18 July 2007 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

09 March 2007 - Visual Studio 2003 and Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

14 December 2006 - Visual Studio 2003 and Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

15 November 2006 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

30 October 2006 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

6 October 2006 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

4 October 2006 - Visual Studio 2003 Source Code available for download

19 September 2006 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

17 August 2006 - Second Sample Chapter added to downloads

14 August 2006 - First edition of book released

5 June 2006 - Sample Chapter updated with final draft

13 May 2006 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code updated

10 April 2006 - Book production process begins

21 Oct 2005 - Visual Studio 2005 Source Code available for download

7 Sept 2005 - Website launched


This page contains a list of updates to the book. Also see the Errata page for a list of typos.

Chapter 3, An Introduction To Internationalization

In this chapter I mention Strongly Typed Resources and also that ResGen has a "publicClass" switch to allow you to generate public resources. Visual Studio 2008 introduces a PublicResXFileCodeGenerator to complement the existing ResXFileCodeGenerator to allow you to generate public strongly typed resource classes without having to use ResGen. For more details see this Public Strongly Typed Resources With PublicResXFileCodeGenerator.

Chapter 4, Windows Forms Specifics

One Windows Forms control that often pops up in localization discussions is the MaskedTextBox control and specifically its Mask property and how to localize it. The MaskedTextBox, its Mask property and Visual Studio's localized property editor for the Mask property are covered in a blog entry entitled Localizing MaskedTextBox Masks.

For a code snippet that preserves comments in Windows Forms resx files when Visual Studio overwrites them see a blog post entitled Preserving Windows Forms resx Comments.

In the section entitled "Deploying All Cultures Individually Using msbuild" on deploying internationalized ClickOnce applications I mention the problem that setting the PublishState of individual cultures is awkward in an automated build because the PublishState is part of the .csproj or .vbproj file and there is no built-in way of changing this setting. I suggest that you could write a utility for that purpose and this is what I have now done. You can read more about it at Setting The ClickOnce PublishState In Internationalized Applications.

Chapter 5, ASP.NET Specifics

The section entitled "Localizing ASP.NET 2 Components" mentions that the new System.Web controls such as the Login controls have a large amount of localizable text associated with them that is made localizable by selecting Tools | Generate Local Resources. The downloadable source code for the book now includes a utility called the ASP.NET Control Localizer that reads these localized resources from the .NET Framework Language Pack and automatically localizes these controls for you. The benefit is considerably less work for your localizer/translator.

Since the book was published Microsoft released ASP.NET AJAX which adds a new set of localization and globalization considerations to the developer's world. I wrote an article on this subject for the January 2008 issue of MSDN Magazine entitled Around the World with ASP.NET AJAX Applications that you can download. In addition you can find the slides for a presentation that I gave on "Internationalizing ASP.NET AJAX" at

The WebResource and ScriptResource HTTP Handler references (i.e. "script src=/WebResource.axd?...") that are embedded in generated pages can be difficult to understand and difficult to debug. For this reason I wrote a utility called the Script Resource Viewer that you can download from the Downloads page. You can find an explanation for how to use it complete with screen shots at

Visual Studio 2008 has a minor and important update to Tools | Generate Local Resources in that it only adds culture and uiculture page attributes the first time it is run. This can be important depending on your scenario. For a fuller explanation see

Chapter 6, Globalization

The Globalization chapter discusses how the IFormatProvider helps to display numbers and currency in a given culture. However, there is no built in solution for displaying currencies other than your own in your own culture's format. See Displaying Currencies In Your Local Format for a solution to this problem.

In the section entitled "Setting The Keyboard Layout Programmatically" a custom method called SetInputLanguage is written to show how to set the input language to a setting appropriate to a culture (typically CurrentUICulture). The code in the example is correct but the example itself is unnecessary as the .NET Framework 1.1 and 2.0 already support this feature. Use InputLanguage.FromCulture to achieve the same effect:-

InputLanguage.CurrentInputLanguage = InputLanguage.FromCulture(CultureInfo.CurrentUICulture);

In the section entitled "Extending The CultureInfo Class" the example shows how to add a property called PostalCodeInfo. You can get a list of postal code formats and other formats that can be used with the MaskedTextBox's Mask property in a blog entry entitled Localizing MaskedTextBox Masks.

In the section entitled "Extending The CultureInfo Class" I show how to extend the CultureInfo class by inheriting from it and fixing up the Parent and InvariantCulture properties. This method is suitable for all versions of the .NET Framework. However, with the advent of LINQ there is now an alternative to inheritance: Extension Methods. Read Extending The CultureInfo Class Using Extension Methods and Extension Methods In The .NET Framework 2.0 for more details. You can also watch a related micro-presentation (6 minutes 40 seconds) I gave on Extension Methods Will Save The World.

Chapter 7, Middle East and East Asian Cultures

Microsoft has released a library of classes for East Asian cultures that add a number of new features including number formatting and translation between Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese. You can learn more about this here.

Chapter 11, Custom Cultures

Several examples of custom cultures in this chapter show how to specify the calendar class for a custom culture. However, the combination of using a custom calendar with a custom culture is covered in a blog entry entitled Why Can’t I Use My Own Calendar Classes In Custom Cultures ?.

One of the examples in this chapter shows how to export cultures from newer operating systems to older operating systems. Unfortunately this is problematic when exporting cultures from Vista. A blog entry entitled Custom Cultures, Vista and the IetfLanguageTag explains why and how the updated downloadable source code for the book solves this problem.

Chapter 12, Custom Resource Managers

The section entitled "Using Custom Resource Managers in Windows Forms" introduces a component called the ResourceManagerSetter (included with the source code for the book). The ResourceManagerSetter injects the following line into the serialized code for the form:-

resources = Internationalization.Resources.ResourceManagerProvider.GetResourceManager(typeof(Form1));

The purpose is to allow a form to draw resources from a resource manager other than ResourceManager. This code works fine for Visual Studio 2003. It used to work for Visual Studio 2005 and simply produce a warning. The section states that the warning can be ignored. Unfortunately it cannot be ignored for the RTM release of Visual Studio 2005. The updated ResourceMangerSetter for Visual Studio 2005 (available in the downloadable source for the book) now injects a slightly different line into the serialized code for the form:-

Internationalization.Resources.ResourceManagerProvider.GetResourceManager(typeof(Form1), out resources);

This code does not raise a warning in Visual Studio 2005 and achieves the desired effect of setting the local resources variable to the ResourceManager returned from GetResourceManager.

Chapter 13, Testing Internationalization Using FxCop

The section entitled "FxCop and ASP.NET" notes that when Visual Studio 2005 was released the Web Application Project had been removed and replaced with the Web Site Project. One of the consequences of this is that the web site's assembly is generated in a pseudo random location and this makes analysis by FxCop difficult (although the chapter suggests ways of overcoming this). With the release of Visual Studio 2005 Service Pack 1, however, the Web Application Project has been reintroduced and this represents an excellent solution for analyzing web applications using FxCop.

The section entitled "FxCop and ASP.NET" discusses the fact that FxCop 1.35 ignores generated code (and therefore code that originates from .aspx files). Starting with FxCop 1.36 this behaviour has changed and FxCop now analyzes generated code by default (to turn this feature off you check the "Suppress analysis results against generated code" checkbox in the "Spelling & Analysis" tab of FxCop's Project | Options dialog).

For a complete video presentation on Writing Custom FxCop Rules you can download a presentation I gave at the annual VBUG Conference in 2006
here .

Although Microsoft has still not released any documentation for the FxCop SDK Jason Kresowaty has. You can get full details here.

Appendix A, New Internationalization Features in the .NET Framework 2.0 and Visual Studio 2005

A new utility, ConvertResX, has been added to the Visual Studio 2005 downloadable source code for the book. ConvertResX converts .NET Framework 2.0 .resx files to .NET Framework 1.1 .resx files. This utility is intended for projects that are created using Visual Studio 2005 but for whatever reason must be opened and compiled using Visual Studio 2003.

Appendix B, Information Resources

Add to the section entitled "Web Sites and FTP Sites" the following resources:-

The section entitled "Alternatives to .NET Framework Internationalization" mentions that Microsoft began work on a product called the Microsoft Application Translator in May 2004 but didn't release it. The idea behind this product is that it translates Windows applications on the fly by intercepting Windows before they are displayed and retrieving localized text from an updatable store. This approach has now been realized by the WizTom product range in the form of WizTom For Windows and WizTom For .NET. If you are interested in translating Windows applications on the fly take a look at the Microsoft Captions Language Interface Pack.