multiple languages in fedora workstation?

Michael Catanzaro mcatanzaro at
Fri Jul 3 14:22:35 UTC 2015

On Fri, 2015-07-03 at 01:27 -0500, kendell clark wrote:
> hi all
> This may have been covered here before, and if so I apologize for the 
> mess. I've been getting a couple of blind users who switch over from 
> windows to fedora, or at least, they say they will. But they speak 
> multiple languages, and usually want to have gnome shell and apps 
> displayed in their native language. So I went and attempted to find 
> out 
> how this is done. Here is what I've found, and it's puzzling. 
> According 
> to gnome's docs, you simply go into the region and language control 
> center applet, highlight the language you want to use, and press 
> enter. 
> If the language isn't  in the list  you're supposed to find a "..." 
> button to open a list of languages to pick from. On my fedora 
> install, 
> there are only two items in the list. 

That's strange; there are nine languages in my list.

> English US, and an item that's 
> silent. Orca says nothing but I think it's that "..." button the docs 
> were talking about. Instead of taking me to a list, it closes the 
> language dialog with no effect.

OK, this is a bug. That button only works when you click it with a
mouse, but when you select it with the keyboard and then hit Enter, it
closes the dialog.

We also need an accessible label for the ... button.

> I know how locales on the command line 
> are supposed to work, you've got two files in /etc that control this. 
> Locale.gen, which controls what languages are available to the 
> system. I 
> chose german and french, utf8, just to experiment with. Then there's 
> locale.conf which controls the currently active language.  You simply 
> export a new language into this file and the language is supposed to 
> change. Example, export lang=en_UK.utf-8 > /etc/locale.conf." Is this 
> what gnome's language control center item does?

If you're an administrator, or if you're not an administrator and you
click the Login Screen button, then it will use localed to set the
system language. It's the equivalent of the command 'localectl set
-locale', which will modify /etc/locale.conf for you.

If you're not an administrator and don't click the Login Screen button,
then it changes your user account's language settings with
accountsservice, which are used to set $LANG when logging in to GNOME

Keep in mind that in order for the change to system language to take
effect on the login screen, you'd have to restart your computer, and
for the change to take effect in GNOME Shell, you'd have to log out and
log in again.

>  I'm hearing a lot about 
> these "language packs" in gnome's documentation, but no matter how I 
> search, dnf, software, I can't find one. Anyone got any ideas? After 
> I 
> added french and german in locale.gen, or rather, uncommented them 
> and 
> ran locale-gen, the languages immediately showed up in the language 
> list, but pressing enter on them didn't change the language. I'm 
> hoping 
> it's something obvious, such as you needing to log out and back in 
> for 
> the new language to take effect. If not, this is probably a bug in 
> gnome 
> and I need to report it.
> Thanks for reading
> Kendell clark

It's the same problem that affects the ... button: pressing enter does
not select the new language as you would expect; instead it closes the
dialog without changing your language. So it's a bug. Please CC me when
you report it, thanks.


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