Let me answer this with a story… it began with a question in my inbox I hadn’t seen before, “Are standard windows scrollbars over-localized on non-ENU OS?”  A tester on my team had installed an English version of the product on a Japanese OS.  He noticed that the scrollbars within the English product had MSAA names in Japanese.  I’ve always told people that whatever appears in the UI must be the same as the control’s MSAA name.  But, I had never been asked what to do with controls that don’t have their names appear in the UI, like scroll bars, on localized product versions.

 

After talking with the Windows Accessibility Team, I found out the answer is, “no, the standard windows scrollbars are not over-localized”, meaning that they should contain Japanese MSAA names.  These are the same scrollbars that appear all throughout the operating system, so it makes sense that they have the same Japanese MSAA names as in notepad or windows explorer or in any other localized product.

 

Which MSAA properties must be localized?

  1. Name – with the exception of the scrollbars listed above.
  2. Value – for example, the content within an edit box or a combo box needs to match what is on the screen
  3. Description
  4. Help – since it can be used to describe the content in ToolTips
  5. DefaultAction – you should get this for free, provided you are using one of the given DefaultActions listed in oleaccrc.dll
  6. KeyboardShortcut – should be localized as needed to support the localized product  (I believe it depends on the language what shortcuts and which mnemonics get localized)
  7. RoleText – you should get this for free, provided you are using one of the given Roles listed in oleaccrc.dll
  8. StateText – you should get this for free, provided you are using one of the given States listed in oleaccrc.dll