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Windows 8: Change the language settings

When Windows is installed it prompts you to select the language, region, time, and other things. This is so that it can use the right keyboard, the correct spelling of certain words - colour (UK) instead of color (US) and so on. In some circumstances you may find that Windows is not set to the correct region or you want to change the region. For example, if you regularly write in French you might want to set it as an alternate labguage. You can easily change these settings.

Select the Desktop from the Start screen. Move the mouse to the bottom left corner of the screen and when the Start screen tile is displayed, right click it and select Control Panel from the menu that is displayed.

Windows 8 language settings

Select small icons view in the top right corner of the Control Panel and then click Language. You'll see the currently loaded language and there is a link to add more languages. Click it.

Windows 8 language settings

A list of language tiles is displayed. Just find the one you want and click it. Some times look like stacks and if English is clicked, for instance, you will see that there are lots of variations, such as Autralian English, American English, United Kingdom English and many more. Select the one you want and click Add.

Windows 8 language settings

There are now two languages in the language list (second screen shot) and the one that appears first is the default. You can switch their positions by selecting them and clicking Move up or Move down. So if you want UK English to be the default, make sure it is at the top. This not only affects things like spelling, but also the keyboard layout used. Some letters and symbols are in different positions on US and UK keyboards for example.

If you are having problems after adding a new region, select the one the don't want and click the Remove link.

There are more regional, language and keyboard settings in this article.