Hebrew Keyboard

The Ultimate Guide to Typing Hebrew on your Non-Hebrew Keyboard

Hebrew Keyboard
My lovely Taiwanese Asus has gone all Hebrew! Shalom velehitraot, Angleet!

Finding a Hebrew keyboard in some places is very hard, not to mention it being impossible in many countries. However, in a world conquered by the Internet, there is nothing impossible anymore. You will be able to make your own Hebrew keyboard even if you live in the heart of Tehran or Saudi Arabia. And start typing Hebrew right away!
This page will show you how to physically and logically prepare your computer for typing Hebrew, without the need of buying a brand new Hebrew keyboard or any special software.
But talking about buying a factory-made Hebrew keyboards, they are available on the Internet if you want to make a long story short. However, if you want to keep it free, then follow me, please.

What you need is:

  1. Your regular keyboard, no matter in which language it is.
  2. Price tag stickers (labels), or some glue.
  3. To continue reading this article! Yep, still there is more to come…

Note that if you are using an expensive keyboard that you can’t afford to play with (or if you are doing this on your laptop), then forget about the glue and get yourself a set of blank price tags also called product labels, they are available for a few cents everywhere. I got mine (from Alexandria) for 50 cents. If you take this path, please do expect that you are going to write the letters yourself, using your own hands. Do not panic. You can do it!

Hebrew Keyboard Stickers
Those are my stickers I got from a local book store in Alexandria. 50 cents for over 30 stickers. Yep, god bless China!

If you are using an extra keyboard that you can dedicate it for this cause, then best is to get yourself some glue and print out the Hebrew layout image below. Then using a ruler or scissors, divide the letters so you can use each for a certain key. And you still need some glue, to glue each paper on the proper key, on your Hebrew-in-the-making keyboard.

What to do!

  1. Either print out the image below and separate letters, or use your own price stickers to write each letter yourself. (Note that if you can type English without having to look at your keyboard, then just write the Hebrew letter and ignore the English letters that you do not need. I did this)
  2. Stick each sticker on the proper location. Do not look at the Hebrew letters, just match the English ones. Even if your new stickers are Hebrew only, use the Hebrew-English layout picture here to decide which letter goes with which key. It is easy. (ask me if you don’t understand this part)

P.S. Use the glue of course if you have printed out the paper yourself without the use of price tag stickers. (these tag labels are usually self-glued)

Here is the Hebrew keyboard layout:

Hebrew Keyboard Layout
Click to enlarge this Hebrew keyboard Layout
Photo Dues: Oracle (TM)

Now that we are done physically, we have to emotionally prepare your computer to understand that it has a new keyboard now! Not any keyboard. A Hebrew keyboard!

I assume you are still using Windows XP as I do, then all you have to do is ….

  1. Go to Start > Control Panel (or) My Computer > Control Panel.
  2. Double-click on “Regional and Language Options”. A small message box will pop up.
  3. In the message box, find “Languages” tab, then make sure you tickle “Install files for complex script and right-to-left languages (including Thai). This is essential because as you know, your beloved Hebrew language goes from right to left!
    Typing Hebrew
    Typing Hebrew on Windows XP. Step 4
  4. Choose apply, you might be asked to put your Windows CD on, do it, or at least find the language pack online (I will try to find a good legal resource and post it here) AND DO NOT CLOSE THE WINDOW! (sorry for yelling). Oh, it might ask you to reboot. Be sure to bookmark this page before you reboot so you won’t lose track (you are going to bookmark my site in all cases, right?)
  5. After you are done with applying these changes, click on “details”
  6. A new message box will pop up, choose “Add”, then find Hebrew. Click OK to all message boxes then restart your computer (if you haven’t already in step 4.
    Hebrew Keyboard Windows XP
    Enable your newly-created Hebrew Keyboard on Windows XP

    Hurray! You are done my friend!
    If you have some questions, never hesitate to ask me. I will do my best to answer all of them.

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