Japanese Input on Ubuntu Linux 13.04 Raring Ringtail

May 7th, 2013

This tutorial will show you how to set up Japanese input IME (日本語入力方法) on Ubuntu Linux 13.04 from the Unity interface so you can type in Japanese in all your favorite Ubuntu applications. The installation procedure is identical to the previous Ubuntu 12.04 and Ubuntu 12.10 releases.

Setup Procedure

To start, select Dash home from the Unity Launcher.


From the Dash home, search for Language Support.


Select Language Support.


Note: If you get the language support is not installed completely dialog box at this point, press Install to install them now.


On the Language tab of the Language Support screen, press Install / Remove Languages…

On the Installed Languages screen, scroll down to Japanese and check Installed, and then press Apply Changes.

Enter your password on the Authenticate screen.

It will take a few moments to download and install the Japanese IME packages.

Back on the Language Support screen, select IBus for the Keyboard input method system, and then press Close.


Once again select Dash home from the Unity Launcher.


From the Dash home, search for Keyboard Input Methods.


Select Keyboard Input Methods.


Note: You may get a pop up message saying Keyboard Input Methods (IBus Daemon) has not been started. Do you want to start it now? Select Yes.

On the Input Method tab of the Ibus Preferences screen, select the Customize active input methods check box.

Then, press Select an input method and select Japanese → Anthy.


Press Add and then press Close.

The Ibus keyboard icon will now display on the top panel.


Open up any application with a text box such as gedit and place the cursor in the text box.

Press the Ibus keyboard icon on the tap panel and select Japanese-Anthy.


The Ibus keyboard icon will now change to the Anthy Aち icon.


That’s it. You can now type in Japanese in Ubuntu 13.04. お疲れさまでした。

11 Responses to “Japanese Input on Ubuntu Linux 13.04 Raring Ringtail”

  1. Yazza says:

    Thanks for the help, this really really helped. I got the first part right, but I didn’t know how to convert an english qwerty keyboard into a japanese keyboard until I stumbled upon this page.

    Thanks so much for you help. I have a japanese friend staying in my home with no money, so this helped us immensely.

    Thanks again 🙂

  2. Sam Pearman says:

    Thanks so much for this! Quick and easy, exactly what I needed. I also added “Super+grave” as a toggle key so that I have an easy way to switch between the languages. ありがとうございました。

  3. 俊英 says:


  4. Mia says:

    How did you guys make it work on Gnome? I can’t see the Ibus keyboard icon in the top panel.

  5. Punkroku says:

    I followed the instructions thanks but when I go to Ibus preferences I don’t see Anthy only tcode(m17n) and trycode(m17n) When I try to type it automatically converts to kanji. I want to stay in hiragana or katakana cause I’m a newb…
    Then somehow I deleted Ibus from my system bar… what do I do now? How do I get Anthy?

    I am more familiar with the Win IME I can press win+c to edit is there a equivalent command for linux? Thank you!

  6. シキピり says:


  7. vladhaund says:

    Thank you so much for this easy to learn tutorial!
    I was having a hard time to configure it’s settings but thanks to you I was saved. It’s very easy once you know how to find it 😀 どうも、ありがとうございます!

  8. Miles says:

    I’m using version 13.04, so my setup looks a little different, and I’m having trouble. Under Language Support -> Language, I have Japanese installed, and have IBUS selected for Keyboard Input system. But even though I apparently have ibus installed, I can’t seem to navigate to it to actually run it or change settings etc… What am I doing wrong?

  9. hoangnvhk says:

    I’m using Linux mint 16. Both Scim and Ibus, I can’t type some Kanji characters, like 限 (ki-ri).
    Someone help me!

  10. haru says:

    Thanks for the post! Sadly, 13.10 seemed to have broke support for iBus package altogether…

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