- 1 Installation
- 2 Configuration
- 3 Tips and tricks
- 4 Troubleshooting
- 5 ibus-m17n
- 6 See also
Input method engines
You will need at least one input method, corresponding to the language you wish to type. Available input methods include:
Package currently not maintained and partly broken with latest ibus base. Use - Intelligent Chinese Phonetic IME for Hanyu pinyin and Zhuyin (Bopomofo) users. Designed by IBus main author and has many advance features such as English spell checking. instead.
- Rime IME project. - Powerful and smart input method for a wide range of Chinese input methods, based on the
- - Intelligent Chinese Phonetic IME for Zhuyin (Bopomofo) users, based on .
- AUR - Chinese IME for Cangjie3, Cangjie3, and Quick based on AUR and AUR.
- - Japanese IME, based on .
- Mozc. AUR - Japanese IME, based on
- - Japanese IME, based on .
- - Korean IME, based on .
- - IME for typing Vietnamese characters.
- - IME that accommodates table-based IMs.
- - M17n IME which allows input of many languages using the input methods from .
- Keyman input method for Windows which supports over 1,000 languages, such as complex scripts, languages of minorities, and IPA symbols. Only part of them is available in KMFL as it can work with uncompiled layout description only (*.kmn files). AUR - Linux port of
To see all available input methods:
$ pacman -Ss '^ibus-*'
Others packages are also available in the AUR.
$ ibus-setup (as the user who will use IBus).
It will start the daemon and give you this message:
IBus has been started! If you cannot use IBus, please add below lines in
~/.bashrc, and relogin your desktop. export GTK_IM_MODULE=ibus export XMODIFIERS=@im=ibus export QT_IM_MODULE=ibus
- Although IBus uses a daemon, it is not the sort of daemon managed by systemd: it runs as an ordinary user and will be started for you when you login.
- If, however, IBus is not autostarted upon login, then move the “export …” lines above to either
~/.xprofileinstead and append this line to the same file:
ibus-daemon -drx, or
~/.xinitrcand append this line to the same file:
- You can also try adding
ibus-daemon -drxafter the
export ...lines in
You will then see a configuration screen; you can access this screen whenever IBus is running by right-clicking the icon in the system tray and choosing Preferences. See Configuration.
GNOME integrates with IBus, so you should only need to install the package specific to your language. To enable input in your language, add it to the Input Sources section of the Region & Language settings. After you add your input sources (at least 2), GNOME will show the input switcher icon in the tray. If you do not find your appropriate input source when trying to add your input sources, most likely you have not done locale-gen for that locale. The default keyboard shortcut to switch to the next input method in GNOME is
Super+space; disregard the next input method shortcut set in ibus-setup.
KDE needs the 'kimtoy' package to work with ibus
The default General settings should be fine, but go to Input Methods and select your input method(s) in the drop down box, then press Add. You can use multiple input methods if you wish.
Once IBus is set up, you can press
Super+space to use it (multiple times to cycle through available input methods). IBus will remember which input method you are using in each window, so you will have to reactivate it for each new window. You can override this behavior by right clicking the system tray icon, selecting Preferences, and going to the Advanced tab.
If you have decided to use the great ibus-rime IME, check out Rime IME for some help to configure it.
Entering Special Characters—The Compose Input Method
To type special characters, XKB supports compose key sequences. To fulfil this function, IBus supports an input method that is permanently in Compose mode. Instead of hitting a compose key, then typing out the compose sequence, the user switches to the Compose input method (by default using super-space (a.k.a. win-space)), types the compose sequence, then switches back to the previous method. In Archlinux, the Compose input method is not installed by default. To use it, installAUR from the AUR, restart IBus, then look for it in the list of input methods under 'other' at the bottom.
Tips and tricks
When using ibus-pinyin,
- First type the pinyin (sans tones) for the characters you wish to enter.
Downrepeatedly to select a character (going on to the next page if necessary).
Spaceto use a character.
- You can also use
PageDownto scroll pages, and use the number keys 1-5 to select the character you need.
- You can enter multiple characters that form a word or phrase at a time (such as "zhongwen" to enter "中文"). ibus-pinyin will remember which characters you type most frequently and over time make suggestions that are more tuned to your typing profile.
Some applications may not accept non-"direct input" text (e.g. Japanese and Chinese) from Mozc using IBus. In order to resolve this problem add
~/.xprofile and restart your X user session.
IBus main interface is currently only available in GTK+, but Kimpanel provides a native Qt/KDE input interface. Kimpanel is bundled with Plasma 5, but IBus needs to be launched as following to be able to communicate with the panel
$ ibus-daemon --panel=/usr/lib/kimpanel-ibus-panel
To get a menu entry for launching ibus this way, save the following file to
[Desktop Entry] Encoding=UTF-8 Name=IBus (KIMPanel) GenericName=Input Method Framework Comment=Start IBus Input Method Framework Exec=ibus-daemon --panel=/usr/lib/kimpanel-ibus-panel Icon=ibus Terminal=false Type=Application Categories=System;Utility; X-GNOME-Autostart-Phase=Applications X-GNOME-AutoRestart=false X-GNOME-Autostart-Notify=true X-KDE-autostart-after=panel
Then you can either let KDE autostart ibus, or set it as the input method application in Kimpanel, and manually click on the kimpanel icon to start it. In either case, choose Utility/Ibus (Kimpanel) in the Choose Application dialog.
Finally, add the input panel widget to show the panel.
If anyone has any issues with IBus and rxvt-unicode, the following steps should solve it.
Add the following to your
~/.Xresources (possibly not required, first try without):
URxvt.inputMethod: ibus URxvt.preeditType: OverTheSpot
And start IBus with:
$ ibus-daemon --xim
If you start ibus-daemon automatically (e.g. in
~/.xsession) but used to use
ibus-daemon & without the
--xim option, make sure to kill the existing process before testing the new command.
Some users have had problems using Input Methods with GTK applications, because it seems that the gtk.immodules file cannot be found. Adding:
for GTK+ 2, or:
for GTK+ 3, in addition to the three lines above in your
$HOME/.bashrc seems to fix the problem.
If you encounter problems when using Chinese input, check your locale setting. For example in Hong Kong, export LANG=zh_HK.utf8.
To start ibus with GNOME, add this in
~/.profile and restart the GNOME.
export GTK_IM_MODULE=ibus export XMODIFIERS=@im=ibus export QT_IM_MODULE=ibus ibus-daemon -d -x
Chinese users can refer to this page for detailed solution concerning this bug.
If IBus does load but does not see LibreOffice as an input window, add this line to
And then, you need to start ibus with
--xim -d, for example, add this line to
ibus-daemon --xim -d
But the horrible thing is that you need to start LibreOffice in terminal.
If you are using KDE and the above does not work, install
~/.xprofile if you do not mind running LibreOffice in GTK+ 2 mode:
That will make IBus work with LibreOffice, and you can start LibreOffice from anywhere, not just the terminal.
Non US keyboards
If Ibus does not let you write in a given language, let's say Chinese, with a different keyboard layout other than US, then you need to tell it which one to use.
Each input method specifies its desired input layout in an XML configuration file in
/usr/share/ibus/component/<method_name>.xml. Setting the
<layout> tag to the desired value will make the ibus use that layout. With the special value
default, ibus will use whatever is the default layout configured on the system.
You need to change
/usr/share/ibus/component/<method_name>.xml and change the
<layout> tag to the expected keyboard layout.
In the specific case of
ibus-m17n, a helper,
/usr/lib/ibus/ibus-engine-m17n, generates the necessary XML at runtime. With version
1.3.4-4 of the package, this unfortunately uses
us as the
layout without a possibility of override. Fortunately, this was changed to
default a few commits later in Git, but no new release was made since then. To remediate the issue, a Git-master version of the package is available from AUR, which works nicely.
English international AltGr
If you want to use AltGr as compose key for the english keyboard, choose
English international AltGr in the ibus-setup instead of 'English'.
Trouble with Japanese
If you have trouble with Japanese input try to generate the locales with uncommenting
ja_JP.UTF-8 UTF-8 in the
/etc/locale.gen file and then run