HowTo: The "Priorview" preview utility

Background and principles

Priorview is a small utility that provides a preview function for use with OmegaT. For the background and principles, refer to the Preview Howto. This HowTo describes the use of Priorview for Windows and Linux. If you are using Mac OSX, you can download a version of Priorview for Mac here. The Mac OSX version is not yet documented and the information below does not apply to it.

Software required

To use Priorview on Windows or Linux, you need the following:

1. A browser, specifically either:

2. A conversion utility, specifically either:

3. Tcl/Tk

Almost any current version of Tcl/Tk will probably be suitable, but you must have both Tcl (the scripting interpreter) and Tk (the graphical component).

4. Priorview

To install Priorview, simply unpack the zip archive at any suitable location on your hard drive. To launch Priorview, open a command prompt/terminal/console and type in:

cd path

where path is the full pathname of the folder in which you placed preview.tcl. Then type in:

wish priorview.tcl

You can simplify launching by writing a script file, i.e. a plain-text file containing these two lines.

Using Priorview

All being well, Priorview should appear when launched as described above. On this, select:

When you have selected all of these, the Start button appears. When actuated, this launches your browser with a dummy page instructing you to set the automatic refresh function, which you should then do, and then to hit Ctrl+s, Ctrl+d in OmegaT to launch automatic updating of the browser.

Whilst Priorview is running, you can:

Once Priorview has been launched, however, you cannot select a different browser or conversion utility; these options are therefore hidden after launch. To select a different browser or conversion utility, you must close Priorview and relaunch it.

The Quit button closes Priorview and also deletes the temporary files that it creates. (Other methods of closing Priorview will not delete the temporary files.)


A European Commission press release (in .odt format) in OmegaT and below it the instantaneous target text displayed in Opera. Bottom right: the Priorview utility. The layout shown here is just for the sake of example; you can of course arrange the windows as you like.


If the path to the location of priorview.tcl contains spaces, put it in quotes, e.g.:

cd "C:\My Files\priorview"

If Priorview fails to launch:

Depending upon the version of Tcl/Tk that you have installed, you may have to add the version number to the wish command, e.g.:

wish8.5 priorview.tcl

Pay attention to lower/upper case.

If the file displayed in the browser is not being updated, check the following:

Copyright Marc Prior 2012