Windows 8 – Clock, Language and Region – Language

Windows provides a plethora of languages to people who might not be comfortable with the default English language. You can customize your OS to use one or more languages using this applet.

How to Launch It

  • Open the traditional Control Panel through the Start Screen or using the Run
    Windows command “control”.
  • Select “Category” view for Control Panel.
  • Select “Clock, Language and Region” category. This opens a new page containing the subcategories.
  • Select “Language”. This will launch the applet.

The first screen looks similar to the image shown below.

This screen shows the list of languages that are activated for usage. Windows follows the order of the list in using the languages.

For example, if the first language in the list is not installed, it will automatically use the second language present in the list. You can tweak the order of the list to match your preferences. If you are more comfortable with your native language, you can move that language to the top of the list so that Windows uses that language everywhere by default.

You can further populate the list by adding your desired languages. Click on “Add a language” button, which will open the following page.

Figure 2 Add a language

This page lists all the languages identifiable by Windows. Select the language that you want and they will appear on the list of the main page, where you can organize them as per your preference.

Advanced Settings

Windows can switch to a language depending on the context of the user interaction.

  • A different language can be used for all the GUI elements displayed by Windows.
  • The user input, whether it be a keyboard input, a handwriting input, or any other input method, can be set to use a different language other than the one specified at the top of the default language list.
  • Also, each app windows may use a different language, depending on the requirement of the app. Windows also provides a language bar that sits on the taskbar so that languages can be switched quickly in case of such apps.

You can specify separate languages for all the above special contexts in the advanced settings of the Language applet.

The languages specified here override the default language list for their corresponding context.

Besides that, you can also switch on/off the collection of data that Windows does in order to provide you better results in case of handwriting input.

You can also specify whether or not the websites can access your language list. If you block the access, then the websites will try to guess the language depending on the language of the date, time, and number formatting of your system.

It is rather advisable to not block the access as you might start seeing “alien” languages on websites due to inaccurate guess.

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