How to enable the Japanese keyboard on Windows, Ubuntu, Mac and more

In this blog post I'm showing how you can switch your keyboard to Japanese for the most popular operating systems like Windows, MacOS or even Ubuntu.

Jump to your platform by clicking on one of the links (other platforms are coming soon):

Windows 10

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 LTS (Ubuntu Gnome 17.04)

OS X Sierra

Japanese keyboard on Windows 10

Step 1

Windows 10 Step 1

First you have to open your Settings.

Step 2

Windows 10 Step 2

Open the Text & language menu.

Step 3

Windows 10 Step 3

Click on the Region & language category.

Step 4

Windows 10 Step 4

Now select Add a language by pressing on the + sign.

Step 5

Windows 10 Step 5

Then, a view opens with all the supported languages. Here you have to scroll to the right and select 日本語 Japanese entry.

Step 6

Windows 10 Step 6

Windows will notify that it'll install the necessary packages. You'll know when it's finished when it says Language pack available on the second line.

Step 7

Windows 10 Step 7

Now you can select the Japanese keyboard in the task bar in the bottom right corner. Click on your current language (here ENG) and select Japanese Microsoft IME.

Step 8

Windows 10 Step 8

There should appear an A character next to language selection menu.

Step 9

Windows 10 Step 9

Click it exactly once and it should switch the hiragana character .

Step 10

Windows 10 Step 10

Finally, you should be able to type ありがとう in your editor or internet browser of choice.

Japanese Keyboard on Ubuntu 18.04

Step 1

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 1

Step 2

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 2

Step 3

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 3

Step 4

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 4

Step 5

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 5

Step 6

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 6

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Ubuntu 18.04 Step 7

Step 8

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 8

Step 9

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 9

Step 10

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 10

Step 11

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 11

Step 12

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 12

Step 13

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 13

Step 14

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 14

Step 15

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 15

Step 16

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 16

Step 17

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 17

Step 18

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 18

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Ubuntu 18.04 Step 19

Step 20

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 20

Step 21

Ubuntu 18.04 Step 21

Japanese Keyboard on Ubuntu 16.04

Step 1

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 1

Open the lancher and input Settings and click on the respective icon.

Step 2

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 2

Go into the Language Support menu.

Step 3

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 3

In the Language Support menu select Install/Remove Languages... as highlighted in the screenshot.

Step 4

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 4

In the upcoming list, scroll down to the Japanese entry and check the box to the right. Afterwards click Apply.

Step 5

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 5

Ubuntu will now install the necessary packages. Make sure you are connected to the internet.

Step 6

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 6

To make sure everything works. Restart your computer After you computer as rebooted, you should see the Mocz Setup entry in the launcher if you enter Set into the search bar. This is the tool which allows us to the Japanese keyboard. We won't open this application but rather the System Settings. There, click the Keyboard category.

Step 7

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 7

On the lower left, you'll find a button called Text Entry. Press it.

Step 8

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 8

You'll be directed to the Text Entry menu. Here you can add new input sources. We will add Japanese by pressing the + icon in the lower left as highlighted in the screenshot.

Step 9

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 9

Now you can enter Japanese in the search box on the bottom. Select Japanese (Mozc) (IBus) and click Add in the bottom right corner.

Step 10

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 10

Next, you want to click on the En icon (or your local language like De etc.) in the title bar of Ubuntu. Here you can select the Mozc entry.

Step 11

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 11

Go into the same menu again and select Input Mode (A) > Hiragana

Step 12

Ubuntu 16.04 Step 12

Open your favorit browser and entery ありがとう.

Japanese keyboard Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 LTS

(Works on Ubuntu Gnome 17.04 too)

Step 1

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 1

Open the launcher by clicking on Activities in the top left corner. Search for Terminal and open it.

Step 2

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 2 install ibus mozc

In the newly opened windows, enter sudo apt install ibus-mozc and press enter.

Step 3

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 3

Ubuntu will now ask you if you are sure to install the necessary packages. Press Y and enter afterwards. Then Reboot your computer.

Step 4

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 4

Open the Activities view and search for Settings and open it.

Step 5

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 5

Next, click on the Keyboard entry.

Step 6

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 6

On the top right corner of the newly opened window, click on Input Sources.

Step 7

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 7

Press the + button below the Input Sources* section.

Step 8

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 8

Click the tripple dot icon on the bottom.

Step 9

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 9

Search for Japanese and the Other selection should appear.

Step 10

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 10

Now the entry Japanese (Mozc) should appear. Select it and press Add on the top right corner.

Step 11

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 11

Next you have to click on the en (or de, depends on your personal locale) entry in the top bar and select Japanese (Mozc).

Step 12

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 12

Open the menu a second time. Expand the Input Mode (A) entry by clicking it and selecting Hiragana in the upcoming list.

Step 13

Ubuntu Gnome 16.04 Step 13

Open any browser or editor and enter ありがとう.

Japanese keyboard on OS X Sierra

Step 1

Mac OS Step 1

Open the settings by pressing the Settings icon in the dock.

Step 2

Mac OS Step 2

Go into the Keyboard menu

Step 3

Mac OS Step 3

Open the Input Sources category.

Step 4

Mac OS Step 4

Press the + button in the lower left corner.

Step 5

Mac OS Step 5

Search for Japanese, select it on the right and press Add.

Step 6

Mac OS Step 6

Click on your country's flag in the top bar.

Step 7

Mac OS Step 7

Select あ Hiragana

Step 8

Mac OS Step 8

Go into any browser or editor and type ありがとう.

Now you are all setup to learn Japanese kanji.