How to change keyboard layout in Ubuntu

Most Ubuntu users prefer to use their native language as their primary input language when running their system. Ubuntu Settings Utility allows you to add your native language as a keyboard input source. This source input language can be configured to be used as the default keyboard layout. This layout indicates that everything you type on the keyboard will be perceived by your Ubuntu system based on the selected keyboard layout.

This article describes how you can change the keyboard layout according to your preferred input language on the desktop, as well as how to change it in the terminal (see the chapter on changing the keyboard layout on the Ubuntu server at the end of the article.).

We launched the commands and procedures mentioned in this article on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

Change keyboard layout in Ubuntu Desktop

Add keyboard layout language as input

If you prefer to use the graphical interface to perform simple administrative tasks, you can use the graphical settings utility.

You can access the settings through system Dash or access it as follows:

Click the down arrow located in the upper right corner of the Ubuntu desktop, and then click the settings icon in the following view:

Alternatively, you can enter “settings” in the Dash search to open the settings directly.

Finding settings in Dash

By default, the Settings utility opens on the Wi-Fi tab. You need to click on the “Region and Language” tab to configure the keyboard layout.

Here’s what the area and language look like:

Ubuntu Settings

You can add another language for your keyboard layout by clicking the plus sign in the Input Sources section.

Find the language you want to add as an input source and select it.

Add input source

This activates the Add button. Click the Add button, after which your chosen language will be added as an input source or a new keyboard layout language.

Choose language

You can set the default input language using the up and down arrows below the list of input sources. The language at the top of the list will be used as the default keyboard language.

Please close the Settings utility.

Switch between keyboard layouts

After adding an input source, you will see the keyboard language selection icon on the top panel of Gnome. You can expand it and choose the default language that will be used for keyboard layout.

Toggle Keyboard Layout

You can also click the “Show Keyboard Layout” button to get an idea of ​​what your system enters from the keyboard through various keys.

Alternatively, you can also use the keyboard shortcut. Super (windows) + space Switch between keyboard layout languages.

Keyboard shortcut to switch keyboard layout

Your Ubuntu system will now consider the selected language as the new keyboard layout language.

Change keyboard layout on Ubuntu server

Change the keyboard layout with this command on an Ubuntu server:

sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration

After reading this article, you can choose your favorite input language and use it as your default keyboard layout.

How to change keyboard layout in Ubuntu