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Arabic for Windows

Version 1.5

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Contents
• How to add Arabic Language Support to Windows?
• Arabic keyboard layouts for Western users
• Right-to-Left in Windows
• Download
• Tools
• Links

Arabic keyboard layouts for Western users


Microsoft's Arabic keyboard layouts are perfect for Arabic physical keyboards but what if you
have a Western keyboard? You can download keyboard layouts from this site, designed for the
U. S. keyboard.

• What do you get?


• How do you switch languages?
• How do you type Arabic?

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What do you get?


The package for Windows 2000, XP and NT 4.0 contains two keyboard layouts: Arabic ASDF
Eastern with Arabic-Indic digists and Arabic ASDF Western with Arabic-European digits. The
package for Windows 95, 98 and ME has only one keyboard layout: Arabic ASDF, which is like
Arabic ASDF Western but without Farsi yeh.

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How do you switch languages?


Switch languages with the keyboard layout indicator on the Windows taskbar:
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How do you type Arabic?


Type Arabic by sound or shape:

Some mappings are arbitrary but not completely:

• is placed next to because they look and sound similarly.


• and v are dental sounds: is interdental and v is labiodental.

Alif maksura is mapped onto Shift+Y and Farsi yeh is mapped onto Shift+F.

Diacritics & Tatweel

Hold down the AltGr key (= the right Alt key) to type diacritics and tatweel:

AltGr+A > fatha


AltGr+I > kasra
AltGr+U > damma
AltGr+Q > fathatan
AltGr+E > kasratan
AltGr+W > dammatan
AltGr+O > sukun
AltGr+S > shadda
AltGr+T > tatweel

Punctuation
Hold down the Shift key to type quotation marks, dashes or decimal comma:

Shift+Q > left single quote


Shift+W > right single quote
Shift+E > left double quote
Shift+R > right double quote
Shift+N > en dash
Shift+M > em dash
Shift+6 > decimal comma

Hold down the AltGr key (= the right Alt key) to type remapped punctuation:

AltGr+, > English comma


AltGr+; > English semicolon
AltGr+/ > English question mark
AltGr+\ > backslash

Type | with Shift+AltGr+\.

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Right-to-Left in Windows
Windows 2000 and XP support right-to-left languages at the system level.

Users of Windows 95, 98 or ME can type right-to-left in bidirectional applications such as

• Browsers and Email Clients


o Internet Explorer and Outlook Express 5.01 or later
o Mozilla 1.0 or later
o Netscape 6.2 or later

• Word Processors and Text Editors


o Microsoft Word 2000 or XP
o WordPad for Windows Millenium
o WordPad for Windows 98 with the RichEdit 3.0 update
o AbiWord BiDi
o DingDang Write 2000
o Sharmahd Computing UniPad

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Download
I believe this package to be safe but it is entirely your risk to download and use it. You can
freely use and distribute it but you are not allowed to restrict the rights of others to freely use and
distribute it.

• Download fbarab.zip (295 kB)

Use a decompression utility to extract the installation package from the zip file. Read the
readme file and run fbarab.exe.

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Tools
I used the following applications to make the keyboard layouts, the help files, and the installer:

• Janko's Keyboard Generator


• Keyboard Layout Manager (mirror)
• FAR
• HTML Help Workshop
• Inno Setup Compiler.

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