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4. Customizing Windows 8 > Changing Language and Regional Settings

Changing Language and Regional Settings

Windows 8 is available in many different languages and with many different regional settings to make your tablet more natural for you. For example, if you live in the United Kingdom, there is now a language pack that replaces Z’s with S’s and words like “Favorite” with “Favourite.” Of course, regional settings also control preferences such as currency denomination. Multiple people can sign in to a Windows tablet and have different language settings. Most language Settings are found in the Control Panel, but some are also available from More PC Settings, which you can access in the Settings pane.

Add and Remove Languages

  1. In the Control Panel, tap the Language icon.

  2. Tap Add A Language.

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    Tip

    Your language settings will roam with you from device to device, so if you log on to any other Windows 8 computer, your language settings should be the same as those on your tablet.

  3. In the extensive list of languages that appears, find the language you want to add.

    Note that language variations such as English are grouped together.

  4. Tap Add to add the language.

  5. Order languages such that the most preferred is at the top.

  6. Remove any extra languages. Note that there must be a minimum of one language.

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Change Advanced Language Settings

  1. In the Control Panel Language settings, tap Advanced Settings.

  2. On the drop-down menu that appears, tap to use either the language list that you have defined previously or US English as the Windows display language. This can be useful if there are no languages in the language list that you can read.

  3. On the drop-down menu that appears, tap to use either the language list that you have defined previously or US English as your input language. This can be useful if there are no languages in the list that are available on your keyboard.

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    Tip

    It’s easy to switch between different languages. Tap the keyboard icon on the Settings charm and select one of your available configured languages.

  4. Select the Let Me Set A Different Input Method For Each App Window check box to use different languages in each app on your desktop.

    This is very handy if you need to enter text in a specific app, such as chatting in a different language.

  5. Select the Use The Desktop Language Bar When It’s Available check box to be able to change languages by using a button on the taskbar.

    The Options link helps to control the language bar.

  6. Automatic learning can help with handwriting recognition but it requires data to be sent to Microsoft’s cloud for processing. If you have privacy concerns, you can turn the feature off.

  7. Tap Restore Defaults to go back to your tablet’s original state, with the same language settings you had when you first unpacked your tablet.

    Normally, all settings will use the language lists, and other settings will be disabled, with the exception of automatic learning.

  8. Tap Save to save the settings and close the Advanced Settings dialog box, or tap Cancel to leave settings unaltered.

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Change Date, Time, or Number Formats

  1. In the Control Panel Language settings, in the Action pane on the left, tap the Change Date, Time Or Number Formats link.

  2. Select the Format convention you’d like to use as the basis for your regional formats.

  3. Customize the individual settings for the date and time.

  4. If the settings are not detailed enough for you, it’s possible to explore further settings by which you can make customizations, such as changing the symbols for currency, decimal points, or the measurement system.

  5. Tap OK to save the changes and close the dialog box. Tap Apply to save the changes and keep the window open or tap Cancel to abandon changes.

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Tip

Using the Additional Settings button, it’s possible to take fine grain control over date, time, currency, and number settings. As a result, you can mix and match localizations—for example, an Englishman in New York might like to use date convention of the United Kingdom (dd/mm/yy) with the “$” symbol for currency.

Change Location

  1. Tap the Location tab.

  2. Select the location in which you reside.

  3. Tap OK to save settings and close the dialog box. Tap Apply to save settings and continue to make changes or tap Cancel to abandon any changes.

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Tip

Location settings can control some of the Windows features that are available in your region, so if there isn’t a Windows Store in your region, you might need to change this setting to a region that has the capabilities you require. You might also have to do the same with your Microsoft Account.

Change the Welcome Screen Language Settings

  1. In Region dialog box, tap the Administrative tab.

  2. Tap the Copy Settings button. Note that administrative privileges are required.

  3. Select to copy settings to the Welcome screen.

  4. Tap OK.

  5. Tap the OK button to copy the current language and region settings to the Welcome screen.

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