Hez guzs... or I mean, hey guys! Ugh!

All I want is to have an English keyboard with Z and Y swapped. Why is it so hard to do? I do not want to buy a software just to have this little tweak going on. I want the change to be permanent, I do not want to be toggling it in any way. Just have an English keyboard layout with Z and Y swapped.

Sometimes I need to switch to English (because OneNote is a moron and has the worst language proofing settings I have ever seen - you have to use your mouse to change proofing language. Or use a LOT of keyboard) in order to have my text corrected as an english text. However, I switch to a different keyboard, which has Z and Y swapped and I am used to typing that my whole life and I refuse to change.

Can't I just make it work somehow?

edit: AutoHotKey is an issue. I need the switch to work only in a specific keyboard layout without performance drops and I need my current scripts to continue working.

  • If this is a language issue, you should be able to add the German keyboard layout (that's the only one I'm aware of that swaps Y and Z) to your system through the Language and Internationalization control panel (or whatever they've changed the name to in Windows 10 - I don't have my WinTen box handy at the moment to check). Then, when you need to type in German, Ctrl-Alt-F1 will switch to the German layout, and Ctrl-Alt-F2 back to English (or maybe vice-versa). – Jeff Zeitlin Feb 8 '17 at 17:41
  • No. I use Slovak with ZY swapped and an English one. And I use both, I change them frequently. Thing is, I want to have the English keyboard with QWERTZ layout too. – Ev0oD Feb 8 '17 at 17:51
  • 1
    I think you need to put in the question that you refuse to to press a single extra key to make this happen, but I think this is an XY question problem: you are asking for the wrong solution. Focus on Onenote (such as using the free version of Onetastic to make a one-key macro to change proofing) – Yorik Feb 8 '17 at 19:16
  • Did not realize Onetastic is that powerful. Thanks for pointing me in that direction. However, I thought the initial question is not saying anything about toggling, so why would I explicitly say I do not want to press toggle button to do it, when I did not ask for it in the first place? I want to have Z and Y changed on an English keyboard. No problem with the change being permanent, actually I want that. No toggling. – Ev0oD Feb 9 '17 at 8:46
  • @JeffZeitlin: All former Yugoslavia countries' (Croatia, Slovenia, ...) keyboard layouts are QWERTZ too and this is the only layout which works well for using in Croatia (the<> labels are missing from , and . keys, these can be typed both by using AltGr or by directly pressing the key next to the left Shift). However, AltGr has to be used to type [ ] { } \ | which is not too suitable for typing code so UK layout with swapped Y and Z would be useful. – Chupo_cro Jul 19 at 17:09

It seems you can create your own variant of the standard QWERTY layout using a microsoft provided tool Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator

I haven't had time to go through the whole process of creating a custom layout, sorry about that. You can use file -> load existing keyboard to load the default keyboard then make your modifications. Hope this helps.

Here's a screenshot I took just now when I was trying it:

enter image description here


This does not create an English keyboard with QWERTZ layout, unfortunately, but it is a workaround for the OneNote thing, if anyone would need it.

You can have a "language" setting in Windows with a keyboard of a completely different language.

So my situation now is, that I have:

  1. Slovak language (with Slovak QWERTZ keyboard)
  2. English language (with Slovak QWERTZ keyboard)

Now I can type with English language (Slovak keyboard) in OneNote, which forces English proofing language and then when I type in Slovak I can switch to Slovak language (with Slovak keyboard) and have Slovak proofing language.

The problem with this is that I do not have the benefit of an English keyboard this way, I only have two Slovak keyboards like this (with different localizations)


You can use an AutoHotKey script with

y::z z::y

I will create a script soon and post a link to both the script and an exe of it after I test it

  • I should have mentioned it. I tried. It is quite difficult. I did not manage to build a script that would see what my language is and based on it replace the characters. Remember, I need to switch languages. Not have zy replaced where it was originally correct. Plus I need the change not to mess up my current scripts.. – Ev0oD Feb 8 '17 at 17:37
  • I can make a toggle, it will take more work, and for the startup you could open the run diolougue (Win+R) and enter in shell:startup and copy the exe file there – DanHolli Feb 8 '17 at 17:41
  • @Ev0oD, what would you like the toggle to be? – DanHolli Feb 8 '17 at 17:45
  • What is the toggle supposed to do? I am not sure what you are offering me. My problem proposition is clear above, I guess... – Ev0oD Feb 8 '17 at 17:48
  • toggle the script on and off so it won't affect both keyboards only when you press the toggle – DanHolli Feb 8 '17 at 17:51

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