Typing French letters on a British keyboard

  TheTerminator 11:04 11 Oct 2003

I am about to embark on writing a few french (and German) letters on my computer at home which has as you can expect a British keyboard. Is there any way that I can change the language over to French or German standards so that it picks up and recommends where words and accents should go without me having to "insert symbol" or do strange letter contributions? Does this make sense?

Or do I need to buy a French and German keyboard to get the accents in?

  pj123 11:12 11 Oct 2003

You need to load the French and German Spell checkers. Type as normal then do a spell check and point the spellchecker to the relevant language. It will change them for you.

  john-232317 12:05 11 Oct 2003

Sorry but i just love the title, it brings up a variety of crazy situations in my mind .....;-)

  Zak 14:14 11 Oct 2003


I regularly use Polish and German fonts using Word 97.

Here are the steps for setting up your keyboard layout for another language:

1. Double click on My Computer
2. Double click on Control Panel
3. Double click on Keyboard
4. Select Language Tab
5. Then add the desired language or languages.
6. Enable indicator on task bar and you are then able to quickly change keyboard layout for another language.

Finally to get aquainted with the new language keyboard layout, this is what I did:

1.In word I typed all the characters from my keyboard in the default English layout across the page hitting the return 3 to 4 times at the end of each line.
2.Next I changed the keyboard layout language to say German and type out all the characters in the same order below each line of the respective English ones.
3.Print this out for reference or until you know it off by heart.

Add you need to repeat the above using the shift key for the?"%*& etc. as these also change. (not all but some.

You may also wish to repeat again using Caps Lock for capitals as well.

  Zak 14:29 11 Oct 2003


"so that it picks up and recommends where words and accents......."

For this function you will need to purchase the French and German Language Tools from MS as pj123 says above.

  pj123 16:13 11 Oct 2003

I speak French and German. You don't need to buy anything the dictionaries come with the setup disks. All you need to do is go to the spellchecker in word and select the dictionary you want to use and it will prompt you to insert the appropriate disk(s). I have French, German and English (UK) installed. The only thing you have to remember is to change them for each language as they remain on the last one you used.

  pepe 16:35 11 Oct 2003

Also in the English keyboard alt gr e types é alt gr o types ó also alt gr i types í, there are some others that i forget at the moment, perhaps someone who knows can post a full list.

  Zak 19:15 11 Oct 2003


Which version of MSOffice/Word are you using? My experience with Office/Word97 is that only English Spell Checker is provided. This is borne out by the Help files which advise to purchase any supplemental dictionaries.

Also I am not prompted to insert the setup disc when selcting German. Error message purely states that language dictionay.dll is not present.

For Polish I had to buy the spell checker and proofing tools.

I have done a google search and this seems also to be the case for other languages.

Am I missing something?

  pj123 11:05 12 Oct 2003

Sorry, Zak I didn't realise that. I am using MS Office 2000. Also notice that TheTeminator hasn't mentioned which version he/she is using? So maybe we are all up the wrong tree? Perhaps he/she is not even using Word at all, there are plenty of other word processors out there.

  pj123 12:26 12 Oct 2003

Another option, which I have posted to this thread click here is to open a blank page in your wordprocessor and put all the letters you want on it (in Word you can do this from Insert, Symbol) and save it. Now, every time you need a special character just copy and paste, or, if you are using Word make each of the characters Autotext and assign a shortcut code to them. Then just type the shortcut code when you need to.

  Zak 15:13 12 Oct 2003

Thanks for your comments above pj123, at least MS is making it easier to use other languages. Until this thread I was not aware of this progress. This is also covered in MS Office Support articles relating to Office 2003.

I wonder if all the above has been any help to TheTerminator?

Here is another link for key combinations for creating accents in French, German and Spanish:

click here

The link is for MS Word XP but it works correctly in MS Word 97 as I have tried it out.

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