Monday, July 04, 2005

Use a Foreign Keyboard in XP

I live in the U.S. but I occasionally correspond with people in Norway. I use Windows XP. Is there a way to set up my keyboard so that I can use the three extra Norwegian letters? Of course it would be nice to be able to turn this off when not communicating with Norwegians.

Gary Norsk

In Windows XP it's not at all hard to enable one or more alternate keyboard layouts and switch between them. Open Control Panel and launch Regional and Language Options. Click the Languages tab, then the Details button, then Add. Select the desired language and keyboard layout and click OK. Now click the Language Bar button, check Show additional Language bar icons in the taskbar, and click OK again and again until all dialog boxes are closed. This lets you switch to the Norwegian keyboard. You will, of course, have to learn the correct key locations for the Norwegian keyboard layout.

Another option, which does not require using a different keyboard layout, is to learn the ANSI codes for the additional Norwegian letters. To enter one of these letters in most programs, hold down the Alt key, tap out the numeric code on the keypad at right (not the top-row number keys), then release Alt. Here are the codes: Æ = 0198, æ = 0230, Ø = 0216, ø = 0248, Å = 0197, å = 0229. You could also use Insert | Symbol to enter the characters, but if you know the codes, it's probably quicker to enter them by hand.

No comments: