I've added a custom attribute to the customer. I've added a note to clarify the attribute.

The installer for the attribute:

$installer->addAttribute('customer', 'attribute_code', array(
    'type' => 'text',
    'backend' => '',
    'label' => 'Custom Label',
    'input' => 'multiselect',
    'source' => 'module_namespace/eav_entity_attribute_source_customcustomerattr',
    'visible' => true,
    'required' => false,
    'default' => '',
    'frontend' => '',
    'unique' => false,
    'note' => 'Instruction text',

I've added a csv to the module which works for the Custom Label but it doesn't work for the Instruction text

Magento prints the note in : app/design/adminhtml/default/default/template/widget/form/renderer/fieldset/element.phtml

<?php $_note = $_element->getNote();
// other
<?php if ($_note): ?>
    <p class="note<?php echo $_class ? " {$_class}-note" : ''?>" id="note_<?php echo $_element->getId()?>">
        <span><?php echo $_note ?></span>
<?php endif ?>

What am I missing?

1 Answer 1


You're not missing anything.
The problem is that the note field of the attributes are never translated.
The tabs with attributes are generated via the block Mage_Adminhtml_Block_Catalog_Product_Edit_Tab_Attributes.
you will find this $this->_setFieldset($attributes, $fieldset, array('gallery'));.
This line creates the inputs for each attribute.
If you search for the _setFieldset method definition, you will find it in Mage_Adminhtml_Block_Widget_Form and you will see this in it's body.

         $element = $fieldset->addField($attribute->getAttributeCode(), $fieldType,
                    'name'      => $attribute->getAttributeCode(),
                    'label'     => $attribute->getFrontend()->getLabel(),
                    'class'     => $attribute->getFrontend()->getClass(),
                    'required'  => $attribute->getIsRequired(),
                    'note'      => $attribute->getNote(),

Notice the line 'note' => $attribute->getNote(),. The attribute note does not get translated.
Also in the template you mentioned, the note is used as it is: $_note = $_element->getNote().
You have 2 options here.
one is to rewrite the _setFieldset method and translate the note using Mage::helper('catalog')->__($attribute->getNote()), but this involves a lot of work.
The second option is to create a new admin theme that contains only the template you mentioned and instead of $_note = $_element->getNote(); use

$_note = $this->__($_element->getNote());

Here is a tutorial on how to change the admin theme

  • Thanks I know enough. I'll rewrite the _setFieldset as it will keep the files within the module.
    – janw
    Commented Jul 23, 2015 at 11:28

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