Russification of Macintosh

Updated FOURTH EDITION

Welcome! Are you looking to be able to write in Russian on your computer? Read on - this site is for you.

If you are a Mac user, things have gotten substantially easier since I originally started providing information about getting your Mac to "type" in Russian. Macs come with all the necessary pieces in place - fonts, keyboard layouts, applications that are ready to deal with Cyrillic alphabets right out of the box. One crucial thing is still missing, however - if you are not familiar with key layout in a standard Russian typewriter, you will find it difficult to use Apple-supplied Russian keyboard layouts. This is where my phonetic keyboard layout comes in - it makes it to super-easy to type in Russian because majority of letters are arranged in such a way as to correspond phonetically with latin keys on your keyboard. Here's what my keyboard layout looks like:

There are two things that prompted me to make this update in my blog - first, keyboard layout files are no longer available for download from the original website; and second - MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" finally did away with old way of specifying keyboard layouts in favor of newfangled XML-based files. I made a quick version of my layout in the new format and have been testing it for a while; it is now ready for wider audience.
Dear users, please enjoy!

Keyboard Layout for MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" and above

  • Unzip it by double-clicking on it
  • Place contents into either /Library/Keyboard Layouts or ~/Library/Keyboards folder
  • Go to System Preferences → Language & Text → Input Sources tab and enable the new layout - it is called "Russification"
  • Log out and log back in
  • Switch to this layout to type in Russian; switch back to your default layout when you're done
  • Option key accesses certain letters not present in regular layout
  • Apostrophe is in the upper left instead of "~" (tilde) key - this feature is unique in Snow Leopard version
  • If you use this layout, consider making a donation to support availability and continued development!

Keyboard Layout for MacOS X 10.2 "Jaguar" to 10.5 "Leopard"

  • Unzip it by double-clicking on it
  • Place contents into either /Library/Keyboard Layouts or ~/Library/Keyboards folder
  • Log out and log back in
  • Go to System Preferences → International → Input Menu tab and enable the new layouts (you truly need only one - "Русская - AppleStd")
  • CapsLock toggles between Latin and Cyrillic layout:
  • CapsLock up → Latin
  • CapsLock down → Cyrillic
  • Shift key functions normally in both configurations, producing capital letters.
  • Option key accesses certain letters not present in regular layout
  • If you use this layout, consider making a donation to support availability and continued development!

Keyboard Layout for Windows

Now you can have the same easy-to-use phonetic keyboard layout you came to trust on your Mac when using Windows. I understand that you would rather be using your Mac, but sometimes we simply have no control over these things. So while you have to put up with Windows, at least you do not have to put up with a typewriter-style keyboard layout!
Should be compatible with Windows 2000 and XP (limited testing performed on XP only)
Instructions
  • Download
    • For Windows 2000 and XP (limited testing performed on XP only), download this file: RU-MBP.zip
    • For Windows 7 and above, download this file: ru-mbp7.zip
  • Unzip
  • Double-click "RU-MBP" to install
Configure XP
  • Start → Settings → Control Panel → Regional and Language
  • Languages Tab, in "Text services and input languages," click "Details..."
  • Under "Installed services," click "Add..."
  • Under "Input language:" select Russian
  • Check "Keyboard layout/IME:"
  • Choose "Russian Phonetic Student Keyboard Layout," click "OK"
  • There are now 2 Russian keyboard layouts; remove the one named "Russian"
  • One the same window under "Preferences" click "Language Bar..."
  • Check "Show the Language bar on the desktop" and click "OK"
  • A few more "OK" to dismiss the remaining windows
  • Now, use Left Alt + Shift to activate the new layout you just installed!
  • If you use this layout, consider making a donation to support availability and continued development!




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