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I am trying to install another language support (in addition to the default US). Checking that language checkbox in "Install / Remove Languages..." wasn't too difficult. :)

But now I want to add keyboard support, too, for that language. Again, I am prompted with a nice listbox with the following 4 options:

  1. none
  2. ibus
  3. lo-gtk
  4. th-gtk

But I have no idea what these mean. I googled "ubuntu 10.04 keyboard input method system none ibus lo-gtk th-gtk" but all I could find was descriptions of problems, not an actual definition.

Could you please point me to a webpage where I can learn about the meanings of these 4 different methods and +'s and -'s of each?

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Which language(s) did you (want to) add? – Robert Siemer Mar 15 '14 at 15:52

IBus has support for the typical languages requiring an IME such as Japanese, Chinese (various) and Korean. See list below.

It has replaced SCIM as the IME frontend of choice for Ubuntu, since it's more actively developed. If you're not happy with IBus, SCIM is a mature alternative.

List of packages starting with ibus:

ibus-anthy                  ibus-table-cangjie3         ibus-table-rustrad
ibus-array                  ibus-table-cangjie5         ibus-table-scj6
ibus-chewing                ibus-table-cangjie-big      ibus-table-stroke5
ibus-clutter                ibus-table-cantonese        ibus-table-thai
ibus-el                     ibus-table-cantonhk         ibus-table-translit
ibus-gtk                    ibus-table-cns11643         ibus-table-translit-ua
ibus-hangul                 ibus-table-compose          ibus-table-viqr
ibus-input-pad              ibus-table-easy             ibus-table-wu
ibus-m17n                   ibus-table-easy-big         ibus-table-wubi
ibus-mozc                   ibus-table-emoji            ibus-table-xinhua
ibus-pinyin                 ibus-table-erbi             ibus-table-yawerty
ibus-pinyin-db-android      ibus-table-extraphrase      ibus-table-yong
ibus-pinyin-db-open-phrase  ibus-table-ipa-x-sampa      ibus-table-zhuyin
ibus-qt4                    ibus-table-jyutping         ibus-table-ziranma
ibus-skk                    ibus-table-latex            ibus-tegaki
ibus-sunpinyin              ibus-table-quick            ibus-unikey
ibus-table                  ibus-table-quick3           ibus-xkbc
ibus-table-array30          ibus-table-quick5           
ibus-table-cangjie          ibus-table-quick-classic    

As for lo-gtk and th-gtk, I think they are for Lao and Thai respectively. See below:

$ locate lo-gtk

$ head -n3 /etc/X11/xinit/xinput.d/lo-gtk
# This configuration provides default IM setting for Lao with stock GTK+
# Thai-Lao input method.

$ head -n3 /etc/X11/xinit/xinput.d/th-gtk
# This configuration provides default IM setting for Thai with stock GTK+
# Thai-Lao input method.
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This list enables (or disables) so called “Input Method Editors” (IME). They are needed where multiple key-strokes should result in one letter/character and you need graphical feedback about the selection and confirmation process (e.g. a list to choose from). This is used for Chinese and Japanese, because they have thousands of characters.

With normal keyboards languages, like Russian, Greek and all the others which don’t need more than about 100 characters/letters can use other tricks to get to the goal. “Dead keys”, AltGr for example, or simply Shift.

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