I use a Dvorak keyboard layout, controlled through the language bar "United States-Dvorak". I'm trying to use the Chinese IME (Simplified, Pinyin), but whenever I switch to that mode, the keys go back to QWERTY, so I can't type...

Note: The OS is Windows 7, which has the new Pinyin IME.

Edit: I wish I could put my SO rep up for a bounty here. :\ I guess 100 has to do for now.


Save as .reg file and run (as admin on Win7, I guess... or just use regedit to make the change manually):

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Keyboard Layouts\E00E0804]
"Layout File"="kbddv.dll"

This changes the keyboard layout that ‘MS Pinyin IME 3.0’ for Chinese (Simplified) delegates to to two-handed Dvorak. This does give me ‘你’ for ‘lg’ on a QWERTY keyboard on XP.

If you want a different IME or layout variant you'll have to change it a bit. If Windows 7's IME has a new ID number you might have to look through the other subkeys in ‘Keyboard Layouts’ in regedit to find which E00... code corresponds to the new IME.

For some background see this post by Michael Kaplan (MSKLC author).

  • 1
    On Windows 7, there is no E00E0804 key at the specified location. Is that a key you have to create, or is its absense an indication that things have changed? – Sam Harwell Sep 15 '09 at 17:57
  • Sounds like the old IME is no longer there then. You still have the ‘Keyboard Layouts’ key, yeah? Check each subkey to see if it's named after whatever the new name for the Chinese IME you're using is, then change the ‘Layout File’ value in that subkey to point to the Dvorak keyboard DLL. – bobince Sep 15 '09 at 22:59
  • Well, they have switched to the "Microsoft Pinyin New Experience Input St", but none of the IMEs are under that key (none start with E and I went through all seeing if it was just a new naming). – Sam Harwell Sep 17 '09 at 17:04
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    I don't have Win7 here, but in Vista changing the ‘Layout File’ value in ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Keyboard Layouts\00000804’ to ‘kbddv.dll’ also worked. – bobince Sep 18 '09 at 1:46
  • 1
    That did it! WIN WOOT – Sam Harwell Sep 18 '09 at 3:01

I don't speak or write Chinese, but I found it hard going back to QWERTY for French typing. I eventually downloaded the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator (MSKLC). I think you should download it, and then you can then figure out how the Chinese layout works. Then you can grit your teeth and devote 30 minutes to a few hours of rearanging those keys (or perhaps do it in a text editor) and use MSKLC to compile it into something like "Chinese Dvorak". Install the MSI, and you will have a Chinese Dvorak keyboard.

Eventually, however, I learned that I needed to stay "bilingual", and now I would just use QWERTY for my French except that I alread built the keyboard.

  • I guess the big question here is will it interfere with the functionality of the Pinyin IME. For example, when I rearrange the keys and then type 'ni' (which is the 'lg' keys on QWERTY), will it still properly enter 你...? – Sam Harwell Sep 13 '09 at 7:47
  • If my guess about how the keyboard layout works is correct, then yes. I believe that it uses "dead keys" and that when you press the 'n' key (labeled 'l') it waits to see what you type next. If it sees an 'i', which it would if you pressed the key labeled 'g', it types the same character as it would type if you pressed the key labeled 'n' followed by the key labeled 'i' while in QWERTY. Of course, if I'm wrong about how it works, you might get different results. – Daniel H Sep 13 '09 at 23:06
  • Dvorak should work very well for pinyin text entry; I don't understand why the IME has to be coupled to the keyboard layout so tightly. Smells like a bad design to me! – user4774 Sep 15 '09 at 9:50
  • Of course it's a bad design, but I was incorrect about how it worked. – Daniel H Sep 16 '09 at 3:34

I use Dvorak and Chinese IME.

The Dvorak does not interfere.

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