English is not the only input language for Windows Vista. Not to be confused with the Windows MUI (Multilingual User Interface) which transforms the entire operating system into the language of your choice and is only available for Windows Vista Ultimate.
- To enable keyboards for other languages, open the Start Menuand type Regional into the Search bar. You should get a habit of using the Search bar in the Start Menu since you can virtually access any part of your computer with it. Normally, this would be found in the Control Panel.
So now we’re at the Regional and Language Options window. Click on the third tab that says Keyboards and Languages and click on Change Keyboards.
- Next, click Add and check the keyboards you wish to add. Unlike Windows XP, East Asian fonts are already installed with Vista.
- Press OK and you’re done. You’ve just added another keyboard. Now let’s change a few settings to make our keyboarding life easier. At the top you’ll be able to set your default keyboard, which will be the one in use each time you turn on your computer.
- Next we’re going to configure the Language Bar. The settings themselves are self-explanatory. If you’re using a language with different alphabets such as Japanese (Katakana, Hiragana, Kanji) and Chinese (Simplified, Traditional), then it would be wise to check the box beside “Show additional Language bar icons in the taskbar.
- Next we’ll take a look at the Advanced Key Settings. You’ll have to learn these Key Sequences so you know how to switch between keyboards, languages, etc. Again, they are very self explanatory and you are free to change the Key Sequences.
One thing I noticed was that by hitting the “SHIFT” key, I could quickly switch between Chinese and English while still staying on the Chinese keyboard.
If you’re planning to type in one of the East Asian languages, you may notice that Hand Writing support as well as a few other functions are missing. In the next article, I’ll cover how to enable this as well as the Radicals List and Strokes List.
Windows Vista, Tips, Tricks, Tips and Tricks