Pinyin Zhou logo Pinyin Joe's

Chinese Computing Help Desk


Custom Search

Ubuntu 10 Chinese Setup

[Looking for other versions of Ubuntu? Please see the menu above.]

A Quick Start Guide to
Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx),
Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) and Chinese Setup, Input Methods, Fonts & Preferences

1. Install/Setup (this page)     2. Chinese Input Methods »    3. Chinese Fonts »»

Ubuntu 10 logo and Pinyin input example

1. Installing Chinese Features in Ubuntu 10.xx &

Chinese input methods and fonts can be easily installed on an English-language Ubuntu system, or any other non-Chinese Ubuntu system. You do not need to install a localized Chinese desktop. You should not need to do anything on the command line, although I will introduce a few possible tweaks and fixes later in this discussion.

Ubuntu 10 English or Chinese localized setupInstalling Ubuntu 10.04 or 10.10:

During installation, just click "English" or any other language you prefer for your main interface when presented with localization choices, as shown here on the left.

As you can see from the list shown here, is possible to install Ubuntu 10 as a localized system with most of the GNOME menus and dialogs in simplified or traditional Chinese, but this is not necessary. You can get Chinese features working in any language interface including English.

I'm not going to provide full installation instructions, as this is a simple wizard-based process that is well-supported on the main Ubuntu website and other forums. My next step picks up after installation and updating are complete.

Installing Chinese on an English Ubuntu 10.04 or 10.10 system:

In the following steps, Ubuntu will need to download many files for Chinese support. Please make sure you are connected to the Internet before proceeding.

If you are using the standard Ubuntu desktop, open the "System" menu, select "Administration" and then "Language Support", as shown below:

Ubuntu 10.04 System Menu - Administration - Language Support


If you are using Ubuntu Netbook 10.04 click "System" and then click the "Language Support" icon. In the new Ubuntu Netbook 10.10 Unity interface, on the right click "Applications", then up top click "System", then click the "Language Support" icon.

Ubuntu 10.04 Netbook Remix desktop - System - Administration - Language Support

After you click "Language Support" you may immediately be asked to update a language you already have installed, such as hyphenation for English. That won't take long, so go right ahead and let that install while you are connected to the Internet.

Then in "Language & Text":

  1. pull down the "Keyboard input method system" menu and select "ibus", and
  2. click the button that says "Install / Remove Languages..."

Ubuntu 10 IBus Language and Text dialog

"Installed Languages" will appear. Scroll down to "Chinese (simplified)" and "Chinese (traditional"), and click their boxes in the "Installed" column as shown below. (Also go ahead and try the "Chinese, Min Nan" option if you dare! Don't know know enough Taiwanese for that one myself.) Usually you will want to leave all of the "Components" boxes checked as well.

(Ubuntu 10.04 and Ubuntu 10.10 look about the same except 10.10 has more orange.)

Ubuntu 9.10 Intstalled Languages - Chinese


Click the "Apply Changes" button. Enter your administrator password if required, and the system will download and install a big package of Chinese fonts and other resources for both Ubuntu and OpenOffice, including a Pinyin database or two.

Ubuntu logoutIn 10.04 I got a dialog box saying "Changes applied", and I had to click the "Close" button. In 10.10 it went back to Language & Text all by itself.

In the middle of "Language & Text", there is some very small but very important fine print: "Changes take effect next time you log in." Close Language & Text, and then log out as shown here.

When you log in again, you'll notice a friendly little keyboard icon at the top of your screen:

Ubuntu 10 menu bar with IBus keyboard icon circled


There is one more step required to set up at least one Chinese input method:

Ubuntu Chinese IMEs

And you may also be intereted in:

« top

Home / What's New About Pinyin Joe About Pinyin About Pinyin Input Contact Pinyin Joe
Windows 10 & 8 Chinese Windows 7 & Vista Chinese Windows XP Chinese Ubuntu Linux Chinese Other OS: Android, Mac, ...
More Chinese Fonts More IMEs & tools Free Downloads FAQs Site Map

Copyright © 2005  All Rights Reserved.   Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape
"Microsoft", "Windows", "Linux", "Ubuntu", "Apple", "Macintosh" and any other trademarks on this site are the sole property of their respective owners.