How To Type In Hindi In Ubuntu

GNU/Linux based systems have great support for local languages. It’s very easy and convenient for users, especially bloggers to type in Hindi using GNU/Linux based systems such as Ubuntu, openSUSE, LinuxMint and Fedora.

You need to install an application called iBus. If you are using Ubuntu, open Synaptic Package Manager and search for iBus, under Ubuntu you will also need to install another package called m17 for Hindi support. If you are using openSUSE or Fedora installing iBus will automatically install m17.

Install iBus in Ubuntu

Install iBus m17 in Ubuntu

Once you installed iBus, open Dash and look for iBus. Once iBus is running, go to the second tab called input method and select Hindi > itrans. Then hit the Add button to add this input method. Click on close button. You will notice a keyboard icon on the top panel (in Unity) or bottom panel in Gnome 3 Shell or KDE. You can select as many languages as you want from the input tab of iBus.

iBus Hindi

Now, open a new window of LibreOffice or Gedit or where ever you want to type in Hindi and hit Ctrl+Space. This will change the input method to Hindi for that app. You will notice that the icon on the tray now shows Hindi.

You can now start typing in Hindi. To go back to English hit Ctrl+Space again. So, Ctrl+Space switches between Hindi and Default input language.

Now, you can type across applications – whether you want to type in Hindi on your Facebook or Google + pages using Firefox or Chrome, or want to compose something in LibreOffice or Gedit, or want to chat from Gtalk or send a mail using ThunderBird.

Since iBus is set to individual apps you can type in English on Firefox and in Hindi on LibreOffice (just hit the Ctrl+space to select Hindi for that application).

If you want to switch to global selection (which means when you hit the Ctrl+Space key, input method will change to Hindi across all applications) then open the iBus preference from the icon on the tray and select the Advanced tab. Here tick the check-box for Global input method settings.

About Swapnil Bhartiya

A free software fund-a-mental-ist and Charles Bukowski fan, Swapnil also writes fiction and tries to find cracks in the paper armours of proprietary companies. Swapnil has been covering Linux and Free Software/Open Source since 2005.

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