I have updated locale settings from UI in Settings -> Region and language -> Formats in Ububntu 18.

I can't find where these settings are stored in the OS.

So far I checked

  • /etc/default/locale
  • ~/.profile
  • ~/.bashrc
  • /etc/environment

but my changes reflected nowhere


The user specific settings are stored in ~/.pam_environment. If there is only one user account on the system, the settings are concurrently stored in /etc/default/locale too.


Changes in Settings -> Region and language -> Formats are stored in an unordered database: ~/.config/dconf/user

You can access and change these values through the settings you mentioned in your question, through dconf, or dconf-editor.

The setting is stored in /system/locale/region, using US as the example:

  • Note that the user database is a binary file and as such cannot be directly edited by text editors like nano or vi – Smurfz87 Oct 30 '19 at 9:21
  • If your intention is to use the knowledge in a script, you can alter the value like so from CLI: dconf write /system/locale/region "'en_US.UTF-8'" - note the double string quotation – Smurfz87 Oct 30 '19 at 9:27
  • Well, yes and no. GNOME sets that value, but it's not used on an Ubuntu desktop. Ubuntu instead saves it in and reads from ~/.pam_environment. – Gunnar Hjalmarsson Oct 30 '19 at 11:12

Settings appeared to be in ~/.pam_environment although my user is admin account. Ubuntu 18.04

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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