Changing Default Languages

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 3, 2016)

Word is a program that is sold all over the world. In fact, you can get an idea of the far reach of Word by looking at the Language option from the Tools menu. Here you can see dozens of languages that Word can be configured to use.

So how do you get Word to use a different language as its default? Oddly enough, you don't do it in Word. Instead, you must change your Windows configuration by following these steps:

  1. Choose the Settings option from the Start menu. Windows displays the Settings menu.
  2. Select the Control Panel option from the Settings menu. Windows displays the Control Panel.
  3. Double-click on the Regional Settings applet. Windows displays the Regional Settings Properties dialog box.
  4. Make sure the desired language is set on the Regional Settings tab. (See Figure 1.)
  5. Figure 1. The Regional Settings tab of the Regional Settings Properties dialog box.

  6. Make sure the proper keyboard configuration is set on the Input Locales tab. (See Figure 2.)
  7. Figure 2. The Input Locales tab of the Regional Settings Properties dialog box.

  8. Click on OK.
  9. Restart your computer.

Now, when you use Word, you should have no problem having the default language be exactly want you want on any new documents. You should realize, however, that the grammar and spelling tools may still not work properly even though your default language has changed. This is because those tools are not installed for all languages. Instead, you may need to purchase foreign language tools from Alki Software (this is where Microsoft would send you, as well). You can visit their Web site at http://www.alki.com.

For additional information on this topic, make sure you view this tip.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (888) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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