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Old 23rd July 2008, 02:02 AM   #44
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: En una caja de cartón.
Posts: 82
Default YES! you can have a spanish keyboard (layout) in windows FREE!

This may have been covered and maybe not. I just skimmed after much of the first page.

This is WAY late but I thought I'd post some info for those who actually want the feel of a spanish keyboard but don't want to pay bucks for it.

I have 2 links to provide for windoze users. The first is a site that provides "how to" in both vista and xp. FOR FREE IN MICROSOFT WINDOWS (not something you see or hear everyday) you can have the KEYBOARD LAYOUT of your choice (within limits). Without extra software you can add multiple keyboard layouts to choose from and if you wish, even have a toolbar icon that allows you to switch between keyboards in different applications. I.E. you can be in Notepad in English and in Firefox in Spanish and in writer in french if you so choose. Here's the link for that "how to":

Since this is a site dedicated to Spain and learning Castellano I'll assume you'll want a reference for a spanish keyboard layout.

You can use a variety of clear sticker print pages found at most office supply stores to print overlays to put onto your keyboard if you wish. I just use the above keyboard image when I forget where something is on the spanish layout.

(added in edit, instructions for doing the same in mac os x)

Be careful though, the windows built in keyboard switching utility can take a bit of getting used to and likes to prove you wrong when you think you've got it all figured out.

Now that I've gotten the how to's out of the way for those who just gotta have their windows, Linux is a completely free software, if you don't mind installing it and are somewhat tech savvy. I like fedora the best but in most of the linux flavors you can install multiple languages during the installation process. Additionally you can log in and out of any given user login, set up both the language and keyboard preferences to start up the same for that log in each time. I.E. I have an "American" user and a "Castellano" user and an "Italia" user, etc. etc. etc. I have the keyboard options set on each one respectively, and the login language for each one is the proper language for that login. All this is done free where I would have to pay boocoo bucks for an "addon" pack of several disks to do this in windoze. i.e. when I log into "Castellano", every choice I click on is in spanish, right from the start up, to the log off, to the date in the tool bar, to the menu items on the sound control, etc. etc. etc. and when I log into "American" it's all in u.s. english. etc. etc. Or if I prefer I can have everything display in english and just have the keyboard set to spanish. My choice.

PS you don't have to give up windows or mac to run linux. You can have what's called a dual boot system (2 operating systems on the same computer). Either you or a tech savvy friend partitions your hard drive into multiple partitions. Install your main o.s. (windows or mac) on one partition then use your linux install disk to install linux on the remaining space. Linux installs a "boot loader" which gives you a menu with a choice of which OS to start into, with a "default" option selected so that if you don't do anything in the specified time period it starts into that one automatically. This way you can set up your mac os or windoze the way you like and you can have linux to boot into when you want that "spanish feel" so that windoze doesn't go flaky from too many user option changes enabled.

Sorry this is so late. I hope it helps someone that may have shown up recently or joins later that wonders these things.

Last edited by Flanny; 23rd July 2008 at 02:27 AM. Reason: Adding a link for mac instructions
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