After upgrading to Ubuntu 17.04 from 16.10, I've lost the feature of typing in Unicode layout for Tamil language. Also there is no option to select Tamil (India) which was present in the version 16.10; instead it shows only Tamil (Sri Lanka).

I don't know how to get those things back. Currently I'm using IBus for typing in Indian Languages. But I wish it could be there in default keyboard options.


The Tamil keyboard layouts seem to have been hidden intentionally in version 2.19 of the xkb-data package, which is the one shipped with Ubuntu 17.04. You know better than me whether the reasoning behind that measure is reasonable. (I'd be interested to hear your view.)

Anyway, they are hidden and not dropped. If you open a terminal window and run this command:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.input-sources show-all-sources true

the Tamil layouts should be shown in the user interface again.

  • Thank you Sir, This answer was useful that I came to know why those layout hidden, but it doesn't work for me.. – Srinivasan M Jun 25 '17 at 15:57
  • @SrinivasanM: It should work if you are on standard Ubuntu or Ubuntu GNOME, at least. Which flavor are you using? – Gunnar Hjalmarsson Jun 25 '17 at 16:06
  • FYI (possibly unhelpfully) I am using Ubuntu MATE and in the keyboard settings I can add a layout called Sinhala (phonetic) Tamil (Sri Lanka, Unicode) which seems to allow me to type properly in Tamil. Changing the schema you mentioned made no difference to my ability to find this in MATE. There is no Tamil under India and I don't understand why this one is called Sinhala (but I know nothing about Sinhala). I also find in Language Support only தமிழ்(இலங்கை) (Tamil Sri Lanka); தமிழ்(இந்தியா) (Tamil India) appears only in Regional Formats. – Zanna Jun 26 '17 at 6:38
  • @Zanna: AFAIK the command I mentioned works with unity-control-center and gnome-control-center. MATE uses probably something else, and I wouldn't expect the command to make a difference there. Not unhelpful to have that confirmed. ;) (If you install Tamil, one Tamil entry ought to show up in the "Language for menus and windows" menu.) – Gunnar Hjalmarsson Jun 26 '17 at 8:05
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    BTW I read the link about why the layouts are hidden. Actually the layout for Tamil is fine imho, The letters are modified by pressing a 2nd key - with the 1st key you choose the base letter, then with a 2nd key you choose which combination it should make. You only ever need two keys (and sometimes shift) and the most common sound doesn't require modifying the letter at all, so you mostly only need to press one key (or shift + key) The system is the same as I have on my phone and it seems perfectly logical to me (although I am a beginner in Tamil) so I don't know why they hide this layout. – Zanna Jun 26 '17 at 8:26

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