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Windows 8: ‘Language Preferences in Control Panel, 14 New Display Languages, 13 New LIPs’ Added; Expiration of Windows 8 Developer Preview Extends to Another Year

In another February 20 blog post on Windows 8 blog, Ian Hamilton, a program manager on Windows International team, on the eve of UNESCO’s International Mother Language Day on February 21 – discusses the language options of Windows 8.

This year’s theme is “Mother tongue instruction and inclusive education” and we think making sure Windows can be used in the language you want is one way we can contribute to this goal.

“With Windows 8, we’ve changed how we think about languages from a “local-market feature” to a “feature for everyone everywhere,” and have made it a priority for you to be able to work in any language you want, from any Windows 8 PC. If you can’t read the text that Windows presents to you, you can’t use Windows to its fullest potential. That’s why we are so excited to bring powerful, easy-to-use language features to more users than ever in Windows 8,” posted Hamilton.

Language preferences in Control Panel in Windows 8

He notes, “We have focused our language efforts in Windows 8 following:

  • Enabling more users than ever to install additional languages on their Windows PCs and switch between them.
  • Building a Language preferences area in Control Panel that is an easy-to-use central location for all display languages.
  • Making significant additions to our language list by adding one standalone language and 13 Language Interface Packs (LIPs).”

Language preferences in Control Panel is the new one-stop place to find all Windows display languages in Windows 8. “The main view of Language preferences shows you which languages are enabled on your system. You can see that on this system, English (United States) display language is installed and enabled. The keyboard layout is also US. Language preferences is the one place to go to add or change display languages, input language, and other functionality,” explains Hamilton.

“To add another language to your Windows, simply click the “Add a language” link above the first tile to bring up this list. Select the language you want from the filterable list. Just type the first few letters of the language you want into the search box, and the list is narrowed for you. This search filter works in both the native script as seen on the tile, and the localized name of the language.

Once selected, the language is added to your language list, but does not download and install the display language until you choose to do so. To add it as a display language, click Options. If a language pack is available for your language, you will see the link to “Download and install language pack. To switch to the newly installed display language, you’ll need to make it your primary language, by clicking “Make this the primary language,” as seen in the next screenshot,” added Hamilton.

add a launguage in windows 8

windows 8: options page for this language shows the status of the language pack

windows 8: progress of the download and installation of language pack

More languages than ever before:
“With an additional 14 new display languages for Windows 8, the total comes to 109 languages supported in Windows 8. With these additional languages, Windows will provide a native language version of Windows for over 4.5 billion people,” informed Hamilton.

Adding, he notes, “We are proud to announce the addition of English for the United Kingdom to the list of Windows display languages. We are releasing English for the United Kingdom as a standalone language. Standalone languages contain all the user interface components needed to be independent versions of Windows. Standalone languages can be used by OEMs to image a PC, or can be purchased as boxed software.”

Microsoft also broadens its language support with the addition of 13 new Language Interface Packs (LIPs). “Language Interface Packs install over the top of a standalone Windows display language. These lightweight packs contain localized user interface elements for the most commonly-used Windows features.”

While these packages remain different in how they’re installed, users will not need to understand those differences. Language preferences in Control Panel is the one place where they’ll go to get new Windows display languages, and it handles download and installation seamlessly.

A recent update to Developer Preview fo Windows 8 and Windows 8 Server, extended the expirationto another year. Currently, the expiration date for Windows 8 Developer Preview is set to March 11, 2012, and the expiration date for Windows 8 Server Developer Preview is set to April 8, 2012.

After the activation license expires, Windows 8 Developer Preview and Windows 8 Server Developer Preview will periodically restart. To continue using Windows 8 Developer Preview or Windows 8 Server Developer Preview beyond the default expiry, you must install this update before the expiration date.

After you install this update, Windows automatically tries to reactivate after the restart until activation is successful, and both expiration dates will be postponed to January 15, 2013.

Refer Knowledge base article KB2671501 for more information.

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