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Trados for Excel in demo mode only
Thread poster: Joanne Parker

sylver  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to French
Are they not? Oct 30, 2003

Ralf Lemster wrote:

Sorry, Sylvain, but some of the points you raise are not quite correct.

Anyway, about encryption being different from one version to the next means that a Trados user that does not upgrade is unable to open a trados TM directly, but need to ask the customer for an export, which also sometimes lead to problems as (correct me if I am mistaken) I think language codes are not exactly the same in all Trados versions. Either way, the translator using a past version of Trados, be it only 6 months old, can't open his software's standard TM format. That's downright ridiculous.

Only if the TM was re-created using T6 - all you need to do to share a TM among users with T5/5.5 and T6 is keep the TM in T5 format (which T6 can use, of course).

So let's say your customer sends you a TM from T6 and you have T5. Can you use it? You can't do that, right? Thanks god, you can still use a T5 TM after someone used it on T6.

The real reason behind it is to prevent full compatibility with past versions or worse to them, other CATs. The TM is the property of the translator or of the agency/customer depending the contract, not that of Trados. It follows that by encrypting TMs (with no options to leave them uncrypted), Trados is unduly regulating the use of files it has no rights to. I find this downright dodgy.

Sorry, but I don't follow your argument at all - Trados does not have access to any TM data, so why would they want to encrypt something? There is a very legitimate reason for encryption: given that web access to TMs is imminent, you need to ensure that only those you want to have access get to the data, applying proper controls. Access levels are controlled by whoever holds the admin role for the TM concerned - and that is never Trados.

I think we are not talking about the same thing here, but perhaps I am wrong: What you are talking about is the access restrictions, right?

That's *not* what I am talking about. Save for a mistake on my end, The TM in itself is encrypted regardless of your access settings, since T5, which is why you can no longer open the file in T3 or on any competitor CAT.

Beside, all a hacker would have to do to read the content of the TM would be to get the said version of Trados (the demo would do)

Wrong again - someone trying to access TM data he/she has no authorisation for would need to crack the password protection of the TM.

Yeah, we are definitely not talking about the same thing here. I am talking about a TM for which the user has set no access restrictions, and which he can nevertheless not reuse with another CAT or a past version. As long as the user decide whether or not his documents should be encrypted, great. But if they are encrypted by default regardless of the customer's needs, I disagree. That is not a correct pratice, is it?

Offering an encryption feature to allow customers to protect their documents at will would be all right, I guess, but that's definitely not what Trados is doing.

...simply because that's not their domain - besides, there are other tools for that purpose, such as PGP. Protecting the TM is vital in order to use TMs across the web, or to grant access to TM data in a controlled fashion.
Best regards, Ralf

Well, as long as you exchange on the web both the TM and the segmented file, it doesn't make sense to me to encrypt one and leave the other one open, does it? I am well aware of the existence of encryption programs such as PGP.

Anyway, to me, if the matter is really to protect the data, fine, as long as the user has the choice to use it or not.

There is of course the matter of accessing a TM on a server while working, but server connections are often already password protected with a reasonable safety level. So what is the point to protect the TM with a password, if in order to access to the TM you already need a password?

I don't know much about Trados TM server and I don't know what protocol is used for that matter, but suppose it runs using FTP, or something similiar, you need to login before you get access to the server at all.

Someone who can't crack their TM server's password won't get to the TM data. Someone who can crack their first password is probably able to crack the TM's password too.

TM encryption does not bring anything real in terms of data security, but effectively prevent compatibility with other tools, including previous versions.

If a translation matter is of extremelly confidential nature, I would certainly rule out any live TM sharing, TM encryption or not, and rely on PGP to safely exchange the files. If it is not, the usual server's login control should do quite nicely.

If Trados wants to offer an encryption option, fine, as long as it is an option, and not a must. Once again, the TM belongs to the translator and he should be able to decide whether it should be encrypted or not. However, I agree with you that it isn't really their domain.

So, the way it looks to me, and again, it's just my personal opinion, Trados's attitude on the matter is not correct.

You are of course welcome to point out if something I said is not technically correct. I would be glad to learn that it ain't as bad as it looks.


Joanne Parker  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:59
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Problem solved Nov 3, 2003

Just in case anyone searches for a similar problem in future, the problem is solved. I've been in touch with Trados support and they are going to program a dongle migration file for me. This should then solve the problem.


sylver  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to French
Encrypting Nov 13, 2003

froelich wrote:

You would be surprised how quickly the password protection from v3 TMs can be removed...

Wojtek Froelich
localization engineer

Not that hard, but does it matter at all? If you want to protect a TM (and documents), PGP is way more secure than anything they are likely to come up with.

PGP (and a lot of other encryption softwares) is free, I do not see any advantage in crypting the TM by default. Beside, if confidentiality is the item, well, why are the documents left uncrypted?

The *documents* are confidential, and the TM is confidential only because it could allow to recreate the document. But of course the end purpose of an hacker would be to get the document's content. As long as the document is left unencrypted, why should he attempt to break the TM password? The document is all he needs, right?

The only person that would be interested into breaking the TM's password is the poor translator who got a job on friday evening and finds out he can't use the bloody TM.

Either the user decides that his documents need encryption (completely understandable), or not. But if he does, then he will logically encrypt them, and the TM too.

No, please, face it. TM encryption has only one net result: prevent compatibility. And I wouldn't do them the offense to think they don't know it.

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