Very disappointed in Trados

Just a general post to state my overall extreme disappointment in Trados Studio, which sums up my feelings for it for as long as I have been using it over the past decade. It runs so slow, with terrible feedback, long lags constantly. When I start it up, it takes longer to load than any other application I use.

I recently upgraded to Studio 2022. I also just bought a brand-new PC, a pretty decent one (Microsoft Surface laptop), to try to get better performance than on my old PC. It is barely any better. The file I am currently translating is not even that big (22 mb), but it easily takes several seconds to progress from one segment to the next. Just incredible productivity loss with this time-wasting program.  Please do not tell me the problem is my hardware; my new PC works fine with other apps.

I just find it shocking how poor this product is and has always been, considering the high price tag and the coercitive upgrades required every couple years. If there is one point of solace I can take in the fact that the AI robots will replace us translators very soon is that at least then I won't be coerced into having to upgrade to a poor but pricy new version of Trados every few years.

Do other people have similar issues? I have trouble believing some translators get lightning-fast speed with Trados.

  • Hi Nico

    I must say, it was refreshing to read your summary of that software package. I started experimenting with CAT tools in 1999, when there weren't many around. Specifically I tried Trados (in those days the grotty Workbench version) and STAR Transit. after a week or so of comparing these two I deleted Trados. In those days it was really clunky and only suitable for Word docs (if you had all the right versions...). Even in those days, Transit was far more flexible. Over twenty years later and I still use Transit NXT as my preferred tool, although I often get jobs in MemoQ or Studio format. So I'm juggling all three on a daily basis. Although Studio has progressed considerably (in contrast to MemoQ) since Workbench, it is still a cobbled-together, clunky collection of "functions", I find. The number of times it does weird things that no one understands and no one can help with is frightening. Just a search on the web for workarounds for Studio throws up innumerable errors and potential help tips. Do the same for Transit and there are virtually none. That is not, in my opinion, simply because Trados has 10 times more users - the reason is because it is just badly stitched together. The support at STAR is brilliant (but I do pay for a service agreement, which is not cheap). The one thing you can't do with Transit is create nifty little add-ins. But then, you don't need to. If you need specific tweaks, Star will do them, but charge. I've used that option frequently in the past.

    Just in case anyone reading this is beginning to think I'm an employee of Star, I can confirm I'm not. I'm just totally impressed by what Transit does, how stable it is and the quality control options built in. I once read a comparison of CAT tools in the early 1990s and the key comment about Transit was: if you like Transit, you'll get addicted. Definitely.

    It is, I find, very sad that SDL, now RWS, is simply not able to create a software package that just works. Every time.

    A comparison of dictionary functionality in MultiTerm compared with TermStar would fill a ten-page booklet. So I won't start on that.

    Unfortunately, I see no light at the end of the Studio tunnel. 

    The issue that "The problem is most likely not a general one that every user experiences" sums up Trados. Every user experiences DIFFERENT problems, which is possibly why Support find it difficult to pinpoint them. I started a folder on my desktop entitled "Trados brain farts" in which I collect absolutely meaningless error messages for which there is no help in forums or from Support, because nobody even understands them. 


  • Thank you for your feedback. It is reassuring to see that the problem really is faulty software, Trados, rather than me or my equipment. I'm sure there are lots of others out there with similar opinions. I am perhaps the opposite kind of user, I want the simplest possible thing, do not want to bother with add-ins or specialty boutique software (I had never even heard of Star Transit). I meant what I said though, resignedly: I'm pretty sure that before the decade is out Trados Studio will be a thing of the past, for lots of reasons.

  • When I had this problem some time ago, it turned out to be a problem with my TM.

    However, it would be wise to first follow the instructions in the KB article that Paul linked to.

    If doing all that doesn't fix the problem, try launching the "translate single document" option with one single, very short Word document, a new, empty translation memory, no termbase and no add-ins. If that works at a sensible speed, then the problem is probably with your translation memory, termbase or document.

    If this minimalist experiment is successful, progressively try ...

    1. Your real document, but still with a new, blank translation memory

    If that works OK, it's your TM or termbase.

    2. Your real document, with your real translation memory.

    If that works OK, it's your termbase. If not, it's your TM. Try upgrading it and reindexing it.

    3. Adding your termbase to the project.

    Logically, everything will now slow down again. If it does, try reorganizing your termbase.

    No guarantee that the above will help, but I can assure you that painfully slow operation is not just "typical Studio". I translate Word documents of several tens of megabytes, and a couple of thousand translation units, and Studio reacts faster than I can keep up with (apart from about half a second's lag for term recognition). So don't lose hope!