Field Linguist's Toolbox

Toolbox is a data management and analysis tool for field linguists. If you are not familiar with Toolbox, see more information below.

SIL has told us that in June 2017 they will shut down the server that has been holding the Field Linguist's Toolbox website, and that site will no longer exist. This site will replace it.

Field Linguist's Toolbox is actively supported. Some places on the SIL website appear to say that it is unsupported or discontinued. But that only means that no SIL international people are involved in supporting Toolbox. Toolbox support is provided by people from a field entity of SIL. You can always get help by writing to


Toolbox 1.6.2 Jul 2015 Zip file with Toolbox programs for Windows, Linux and Mac. Toolbox runs on all versions of Windows. It runs on Linux and Mac using Windows emulators. Zip file includes Readme file with information about installation and about Windows emulators. All versions of Toolbox are designed to be upward compatible, so if you are already using Toolbox, it should always be safe to install a newer version of Toolbox

Toolbox New Project Package New Project Package should be installed to start any new project. It is much easier to customize this project than to build a new project from scratch.

Toolbox Self-Training Package Self-training for all operating systems. Be sure to unzip the package. The exercises will not run in the zip file.

Toolbox Non-English Versions Toolbox translated into languages other than English.


Toolbox Self-Training Document Self-training document as an online reference.

MDF Documentation MDF Multi-Dictionary Formatter information. MDF is a set of markers and a formatting system for bilingual dictionaries.

CC Documentation CC Consistent Changes information. CC is used in Toolbox export processes.

Language Encodings Language encodings for a number of non-English languages.

Being sure a folder is unzipped Help on zip files.

MSKLC Help on using MSKLC Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator.

Dictionary Factory Package for quick building of a dictionary from text files.

Transcriber Import Package for importing text from Transcriber files.

Grammatical Tone Package showing a way to handle grammatical tone.

Related Language Adaptation Package showing ways to do related language adaptation.

Book Chapter Verse Package for files organized by book, chapter, and verse.

Toolbox on Mac Mac information.


Toolbox is a data management and analysis tool for field linguists. It is especially useful for maintaining lexical data, and for parsing and interlinearizing text, but it can be used to manage virtually any kind of data. Toolbox is designed to be easy to learn. The user can start with a simple setup and gradually use more powerful features as desired. The Toolbox downloads include a new project package and a self-training package. The training package can also be used for classroom teaching of Toolbox.

Toolbox is in active use by a significant number of field linguists. It is being actively enhanced, and new versions are made available at regular intervals. Bug reports and wishes are always welcome

Online Tlingit Verb Dictionary Example of a web dictionary made with Toolbox.

Toolbox version history.