What is Translation Alignment?

Translation alignment is a way of making use of your existing translation materials

Using the translation alignment tool (formerly WinAlign) in Trados Studio turns your previously translated documents into translation units (TUs), so you can add them to a translation memory (TM).

What is translation alignment?

Translation alignment is a way of making use of existing translation materials.

How does translation alignment work?

The alignment tool matches the source and target language files side-by-side, to determine which pairs belong together.

When would I use translation alignment?

If you have previously translated documents and are now using Trados Studio to translate.

The alignment tool will match the source and target language files, meaning you can build up your translation memory database. Translation memories store your previous translation for future use, helping you translate even faster.

What are the benefits of translation alignment?

  • No need to build a translation memory from scratch. Leverage translated documents to create your translation memory.
  • By creating translation memories through translation alignment you will never have to translate the same sentence ever again.

What types of translation alignment are available?

Types of translation alignment available

Align With Review 

  • Suitable when the source files you are aligning are not exact translations of your target files.
  • The alignment result files open in the Alignment view. Here you can heavily edit the connections and the segment content.
  • You can then also open the alignment file in the Editor view for extra editing or QA checks.

Align Without Review

  • Suitable when you just want to create TM matches for your project and return to your translation work.
  • The translation units generated from the alignment open in the Translation Memory view. Here you can make small edits to the TUs before importing them into the translation memory.

Align Single File Pair

  • Suitable when you want to pair one source document to its corresponding target document and generate one single alignment result (*.sdlalign) file.
  • Sends the translation units resulting from the aligned source and target document to your specified translation memory.

Align Multiple Files

  • Suitable when you want to align several pairs of files at the same time. This generates an alignment result (*.sdlalign) file for each pair of source and target document.
  • Sends the translation units that result for all the generated alignment result files to the same translation memory.

Align Retrofit Files

  • This is an additional case where alignment is used. Studio performs an automatic alignment while updating the changes from an external reviewed target file. You can also choose to review and manually adjust this alignment.
  • The alignment result files open in the Alignment view prior to adding the review changes to the project files. You can edit the connections, but you can only connect segments that are in the same paragraph.

How to use the alignment tool in Trados Studio

This is an SDL Limited video that is now part of the RWS Group.
Learn more about our translation memory software Trados Studio