I need to find the categories in my labels. So,

Starting from SOQL to query Custom Labels in Salesforce

and the documentation https://developer.salesforce.com/docs/atlas.en-us.api_meta.meta/api_meta/meta_customlabels.htm#!

I torn on tooling, and try this query:

Select Id, Name, ManageableState, NamespacePrefix, value FROM CustomLabel where NamespacePrefix = null

It works, and i get the expected results, as we are already using lots of labels in visualforce. But now i need also the cateories, associated with those labels. So i try:

Select Id, Name, ManageableState, NamespacePrefix, value, categories FROM CustomLabel where NamespacePrefix = null

and i get:

No such column 'categories' on entity 'ExternalString'. If you are attempting to use a custom field, be sure to append the '__c' after the custom field name. Please reference your WSDL or the describe call for the appropriate names.

But it's right there in documentation!

1 Answer 1


You could make use of the ExternalString table which represents a custom label for a translatable UI component. Includes access to the associated label in the Metadata API. Available in API version 38.0 and later as per docs

select Id,
from ExternalString
where NamespacePrefix = null
  • computer said no: sObject type 'ExternalString' is not supported. May 21, 2020 at 9:27
  • Are you using Tooling API?
    – TSmith
    May 21, 2020 at 10:51
  • Yes, checking that box enables the query: Thanks!. Is there a way to also get the translations? Jun 9, 2020 at 8:23

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