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WFP3 versus WFP4
Thread poster: Samuel Murray

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Mar 17

Hello everyone

Can we please have a list of what features are unique to either WFP3 or WFP4? Unfortunate translators are encouraged to "upgrade" to version 4 when they renew, not realising that version 4 is not an improved version of version 3, but a completely different program.

Samuel


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JL01  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:50
English to French
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Good idea! Mar 17

Extremely good idea, indeed.

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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2016)
Shared code Mar 18

Samuel Murray wrote:

version 4 is not an improved version of version 3, but a completely different program.



Doesn't version 4 use a lot of code from version 3? It's hard to believe that everything has been written from scratch.

BTW: Are you suggesting that you'll stick with version 3? If so, what do you dislike in version 4?


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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TOPIC STARTER
"code" Mar 18

CafeTran Training wrote:
Doesn't version 4 use a lot of code from version 3? It's hard to believe that everything has been written from scratch.


The "code" does not matter to users. The two programs work in two completely different ways, have different file formats, and have different features. What they have in common, from a user's point of view, is three letters: W, F, and P. However, both are CAT tools, so some common CAT tool features would be available in both.

Also WFP4 does not run on Linux, according to the web site.


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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2016)
Code does matter Mar 18

Samuel Murray wrote:

The "code" does not matter to users.


I beg to differ here. The code (though not visible to users) determines important characteristics as speed, stability, amount of RAM needed, size of glossaries that can be dealt with etc.


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JL01  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:50
English to French
+ ...
Agree with Samuel Murray Mar 18

Let me rephrase his remark: Code does not matter to the user.

Does it matter to the average car driver that power steering is electrical or hydraulic?

CafeTran Training wrote:

[
I beg to differ here. The code (though not visible to users) determines important characteristics as speed, stability, amount of RAM needed, size of glossaries that can be dealt with etc.


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Joseph Tein  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 13:50
Member (2009)
Spanish to English
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This is not a question about computer code Mar 18

Personally I know nothing about code and don't need to.

I would like to know how the two versions compare. As a translator (I have WordFast 3) I'm interested in the differences and advantages/disadvantages of these two translation programs. Does anyone have experience using both of them? Whatever code is being used in these two versions, the only thing that matters to me is how do they compare when I'm working on a translation project.

A link to the WordFast site where they describe WF4: http://www.wordfast.com/wfp4-released


[Edited at 2017-03-19 02:59 GMT]


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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2016)
Outcome Mar 18

JL01 wrote:

Let me rephrase his remark: Code does not matter to the user.

Does it matter to the average car driver that power steering is electrical or hydraulic?


Not when the behaviour is the same. However, when the different techniques lead to a different behaviour/outcome, the underlaying technique becomes relevant.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Okay, so... Mar 18

There are three paid products available from the Wordfast company that would interest freelance translators: Wordfast Classic (WFC), Wordfast Pro 3 (WFP3) and Wordfast Pro 4 (WFP4).

You can buy Wordfast Classic by itself, or you can buy Wordfast Pro 3 and 4 together, or you can buy all three of them together. If you buy all three, it's called Wordfast Studio. So unlike other CAT tools with "Studio" in their names, Wordfast Studio is not a single CAT tool but rather three separate tools that each perform essentially the same function (i.e. they're all three fully fledged, standalone CAT tools, and they're not integrated with each other in any way).

You can't buy just Wordfast Pro 3, or just Wordfast Pro 4. However, when you visit the Wordfast web site, it appears as if you're just buying Wordfast Pro 4, and it appears as if Wordfast Studio is just Wordfast Classic plus Wordfast Pro 4. But in actual fact, the license for "Wordfast Pro 4" is valid for both Wordfast Pro 3 and 4. Just to make things confusing.

There are different versions of Wordfast Classic, e.g. 3, 4, 5 and 6, but they're all the same program, except that later versions have better features and that some less used features from earlier versions were dropped for the sake of speed. This is how version numbering often works. (Trados 2015 is an improved version of Trados 2014, for example. It's essentially the same program -- the newer one is just better.) But that logic does not apply to "Wordfast Pro 3" and "Wordfast Pro 4". Wordfast Pro 4 is an entirely different program. (In much the same way that Trados 2009 is an entirely different program from Trados 2007, by the way.)

Projects

I think one big difference between WFP3 and WFP4 is that WFP3 does not work with projects but with setups (even though WFP3 uses the term "project" to refer to them), whereas WFP4 uses true projects.

In WFP3, when you create a "project", you are essentially just creating a custom configuration. The files (source files, target files, TMs, glossaries, etc) do not "belong" to the "project". The "project" is merely a set of settings that refers to them. And if you always translate the same language combinations, with a limited number of TMs and glossaries, then it would not be unnatural (to WFP3's working) to use just one "project" over and over and over. You can open a new file in WFP3 at any time, and WFP3 will use the most recently used "project" (i.e. use the most recently saved configuration settings). In addition, WFP3 does not create copies of e.g. the source file in some special project sub-folder. The translation file is generated in the same location as the source file, with a slightly different name. In fact, you can move the source files in the middle of the job to another location, and WFP will simply generate the translated file in the new source file location.

WFP4, on the other hand, uses true projects. Every time you want to translate a new file, you have to create a new project. This causes WFP4 to generate certain project-specific sub-folders and copy relevant files into those folders. The translation file is generated in a separate sub-folder. As far as I know, you can't create a new project by opening an existing project and simply changing some of the settings, because a "project" in WFP4 is not simply a set of settings.

By the way, Wordfast Classic (WFC) also uses setups instead of true projects. In WFC, they're referred to as "setups" or "INIs" (as they're saved as INI files, and you can select existing INI files to enable those settings that were saved in that configuation file).

Bilingual format

WFP3's bilingual format is TXML. This is an XML file format, but it is not an XLIFF format. WFP4's bilingual format is TXLF. This is an actual XLIFF format, which makes it more compatible with tools that can handle XLIFF. This is not really, really relevant for freelancers, though, as most modern CAT tools that use XLIFF formats do not edit other CAT tools' XLIFF files directly, but convert them to their own XLIFF format.

If you wish to translate a TXML file in WFP4, then WFP4 will treat the TXML file as any other source file format, and convert it to TXLF for the duration of the translation. When you're finished with your translation, and you create the target file, WFP4 generates a translated TXML file... but it does not generate the file format that the TXML file was originally created from. In fact, as far as I know, WFP4 can't convert a TXML file back to its original format even if the original file is present. WFP4 can only convert a TXLF file back to its original format.

The TXML format is quite forgiving of foreign matter (but this will interest file hackers only and is not relevant to the average freelance translator). I have not experimented much with TXLF.

Next up: TM and glossary formats, and which WFP3 features are missing from WFP4.


[Edited at 2017-03-18 21:31 GMT]

[Edited at 2017-03-18 21:32 GMT]


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JL01  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:50
English to French
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Let me concentrate on Wf Classic Mar 18

Your description of changes in WfC is not really accurate.

The current version is compatible with current versions of Word (I say Word, not Office, as explained below.) Older versions are not compatible with the current version of Word, even though they may be of interest for translators still using Office 2003, for example.

Some features (quite a few, really) have been added. The current version has features that could not have been imagined only 3 or 4 years ago. Such additions have nothing to do with speed (speed of the application, that is), but with productivity, even though I will state that using Google Translate does NOT enhance productivity, IMO.

I don't see how one can say that "features were dropped for the sake of speed." A few features have been dropped over the years, mostly because they had become irrelevant, could no longer be implemented reliably (remote TMs, for ex.), could not be made compliant with changed versions of VB implemented by Microsoft. One major feature which is no longer supported (although it still generally works, for users who know how to use it) is the ability to use WfC with PowerPoint and Excel. This has nothing to do with any of the reasons listed below, and everything to do with architecture changes in Office.



Samuel Murray wrote:

There are different versions of Wordfast Classic, e.g. 3, 4, 5 and 6, but they're all the same program, except that later versions have better features and that some less used features from earlier versions were dropped for the sake of speed.


[Edited at 2017-03-18 21:31 GMT]

[Edited at 2017-03-18 21:32 GMT]


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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2016)
Speed Mar 19

CafeTran Training wrote:

However, when the different techniques lead to a different behaviour/outcome, the underlaying technique becomes relevant.


I've re-installed Wf Pro 4 on my MacBook Pro and I think that a lot of optimisation has been done since the first release, with regards to speed of the program, once the project has been loaded. Importing and converting a folder of SDLXLIFF files still takes some time.

[Edited at 2017-03-19 16:27 GMT]


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 22:50
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
On the point I was trying to make Mar 20

JL01 wrote:
Your description of changes in WfC is not really accurate.


The only point that I was trying to make with WFC is that all versions of WFC are essentially different versions of the same program, unlike WFP 3 and 4, which are completely different products.

I don't see how one can say that "features were dropped for the sake of speed." A few features have been dropped over the years, mostly because...


I believe Yves himself said that some of the dropped features were dropped because of speed and size issues. I'm sure features were dropped for other reasons as well. The point I was trying to make was that some features are dropped and some features are added, but WFC 3 is otherwise essentially the same program as WFC 6.


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 23:50
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
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How about tm compatibility? Mar 20

Thanks Samuel for your explanation of the file formats re WFP3/4. I once have opened WFP4 put closed it right away because I couldn't understand it.
Is it possible to use our age old tms which are txt-files. In WFP3 it works ok. I still like to use WFC in Word, but only one customer wants me to use WFP. So I hardly open it these days.
Is the editor in WFP4 any better compared to 3?


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Lais Lewicki
Brazil
Local time: 17:50
English to Portuguese
Convert your TMs and glossaries Mar 20

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Thanks Samuel for your explanation of the file formats re WFP3/4. I once have opened WFP4 put closed it right away because I couldn't understand it.
Is it possible to use our age old tms which are txt-files. In WFP3 it works ok. I still like to use WFC in Word, but only one customer wants me to use WFP. So I hardly open it these days.
Is the editor in WFP4 any better compared to 3?


Hi Heinrich!

You can export your TMs and glossaries to an "exchange format". This format is read by many CAT Tools (including Trados). On Wordfast Pro 3, go to your TM or glossary list, click export and select TMX (For TMs) or TBX (For Glossaries) format. This will create a new file, which you can then import to WFP4.

I like the interface for Wordfast Pro4 better, you can see the TM look-up and glossary on the bottom of your screen, you won't have to use tags for bold or italic anymore, as you can use the Microsoft Word shortcuts to input them (ctrl+b / ctrl+i).

There are videos on Youtube that you may find helpful to begin using WFP4.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4QJ-dy2FYo


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Andriy Yasharov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 23:50
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
TM import into an existing TM in WFP3 vs WFP4 Mar 20

Lais Lewicki wrote:
You can export your TMs and glossaries to an "exchange format". This format is read by many CAT Tools (including Trados). On Wordfast Pro 3, go to your TM or glossary list, click export and select TMX (For TMs) or TBX (For Glossaries) format. This will create a new file, which you can then import to WFP4.


Exporting a WFP3 TM as a tmx file from WFP3 is not a problem. What I would like to have is to be able to add a tmx file to an existing TM in WFP3. I haven't found an easy solution for the task. How about WFP4? Is it possible to import a tmx file exported from WFP3 into an existing TM in WFP4 directly?


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