From Fedora Project Wiki

GNOME Input Integration


The goal is to unify GNOME's handling of keyboard layouts and input methods to provide an integrated keyboard input experience to users of Fedora's default desktop. This work may be extended in the future to other desktop environments.


Current status

  • Targeted release: Fedora 16
  • Last updated: 2011-09-16
  • Percentage of completion: 100%

Detailed Description

For a long time input on the Unix/Linux desktop has been split by a choice between keyboard layouts and input-methods (IM) which often do not work well together. The feature covers work to improve this situation for GNOME 3 bringing keyboard layouts and IM configuration and use together into an unified UI, like popular commercial OS's provide today.

Current implementations and plans:

Benefit to Fedora

This will make the Fedora desktop easier to use. Users won't have to worry about or know whether they are using xkb or ibus to input, but be able to switch transparently between them.


  • Provide a unified input indicator for gnome-shell that integrates xkb keyboard layout and ibus input-method switching. [done in ibus-gnome3]
  • Add a mechanism to activate on-screen keyboard through ibus. [done see eekboard wiki]
  • Plan to have a TestDay to get sufficient testing and feedback. => Test_Day:2011-09-22_I18n_Desktop

In Fedora 17 the plan is to extend this work further to:

  • hide the gnome-shell keyboard layout indicator when the ibus keyboard indicator is showing or better unify the two.
  • directly associate the keyboard layouts defined in Gnome with those defined in ibus.
  • hopefully also provide a mechanism to activate input method usage (ibus) directly from the gnome control-center, in the sense of imsettings.

How To Test

  • Configuration/activation of keyboard layouts and input-method usage
  • Switching between keyboard layouts and input method engines directly in ibus

See also:

User Experience

IBus will provide a unified experience of keyboard layouts and input methods in its notification/indicator icon. An input indicator will be available for the GNOME Desktop which can be used instead of the keyboard layout indicator and ibus applet dichotomy. Users will be able to switch seamlessly between keyboard layouts and input-methods like on other modern OS's.


A lot of this work can be done on the ibus side but some changes will need to be integrated and accepted upstream in GNOME.

Contingency Plan

Keep F15 status quo: separate keyboard and ibus indicators.


Release Notes

  • IBus is now able to support switching of keyboard layouts in GNOME when using input-methods, avoiding the need for the keyboard indicator when using ibus.

Comments and Discussion