Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am not native english speaker, so my Ubuntu language is different, and it's ok :) But I would like to have command line tools (SVN, for example) to print messages in english, and not in my system language.

Why, you ask? It's because lots of tutorials are in english, and it's IMHO more convenient to use command line that way. So, how to set command line programs to english, and system to another language?

share|improve this question
up vote 10 down vote accepted

If you run the env command, you will be given the environment variables for language.


If you set those variables to English settings, with the export command, any command called after this will be in "English mode".

export LANG=en_US.UTF-8

You can also put this also in the .bashrc or .profile file in your home directory, this will be in effect every time you open a command line terminal.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.