Computer Keyboard Locales Switcher
I just came across a computer program that allowed Windows users to change the language of the computer keyboard with the Caps Lock key.
Using different keyboard locales is a solution for users who work with different languages throughout the day, e.g. Chinese and English. These users need to read and often write in different languages and an option to quickly switch the keyboard layout would probably be appreciated by most of them.
What the developer of the software program Capswitch did not know is that the Windows operating system comes with options to switch keyboard locales with keyboard shortcuts.
The Windows XP operating system for example provides this option in the Regional and Language options module of the Control Panel. A click on the Details button under the Languages tab will open all installed input languages.
A click on the Key Settings button opens another menu with the option to define keyboard shortcuts to switch instantly to the input language.
Only the keyboard shortcut to switch between all installed keyboard layouts is configured by default. It is however possible to define shortcuts for specific switches, e.g. From English to German and vice verse.
These keyboard shortcuts provide the easiest way to quickly switch between keyboard locales. The additional benefit is that no extra software needs to be running in the background for the functionality.
If you are using newer versions of Windows, you may do the following to configure these keyboard shortcuts.
- If a language selector is displayed in the System Tray area, left-click on it and select "language preferences" from the context menu.
- If it is not, open the Windows Control Panel or Settings, and open the "country and region" options under Time & Language there.
- The path in the Control Panel is Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Language\Advanced settings
- There you find a link to "change language bar hot keys" which opens the same menu that you see on the screenshot above.
- Select one of the languages or the "between input languages" switcher, and then "change key sequence". This enables you to set keyboard shortcuts for particular languages or the language switcher.
Please note that shortcuts may not be defined in newer versions of Windows (this is the case for Windows 10 for instance).Advertisement