non us keyboards and cygwin xfree86

thomas graichen
Mon Jan 27 12:28:00 GMT 2003

just because i often ran across it an due to my earlier question
on that list which seems to pop up in google if you search for
that topic i'd like to write down how to make cygwin's XWin work
natively with a non us keyboard (tested with the german keyboard
but should also work for other languages)

* first you have to compile a keymap for your language - for german
  this looks like

    xkbcomp -xkm -m de /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xkb/keymap/xfree86 \

  in older versions of cygwin xfree86 it had to be /tmp/de.xkm
  instead of /etc/X11/xkb/keymap/de

* then you can start your xserver like

    XWin.exe -xkbmap de

  and you should have your keyboard (btw. don't be surprised that
  in the shell not all charackters are shown - like for instance
  the german umlauts - thats the default bash behavior as used in
  cygwin - just open a vi inside that bash and you should be able
  to see all the other charackters too

* if you want to know what the name for your keyboard is or
  which ones are available: just have a look at


hope that helps someone and maybe this should be added to the
cygwin/XFree86 faq ... i hope everything is correct and i have
not missed anything - best wishes


thomas graichen <> ... perfection is reached, not
when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no
longer anything to take away. --- antoine de saint-exupery

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