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Learn about browser language setting

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is the Gizmo Gal for iYogi. A writer by choice and Gizmo Geek by nature, she brings the hottest and latest happening in the Gadgets’ world. So, when you need a peek inside the tech world, you know where the action is.

What are the major aspects of language settings in a web browser? Provide guidelines to configure the language of a web browser.

When you are browsing the net you are receiving the documents from the Web, each page you receive comes with lot of instructions to your browser about the way it is shown to you although you will not be seeing the invisible command that are tagged to the document. One such tag or the instruction about how the page is rendered to you is the language setting. This is also called HTTP. The particular request is called language preference setting. This has nothing to do with the setting of the browser but about the preferred language of the document itself. The popular browsers allow the preferred language setting to be set according to your choices. There is international code for identifying the language tags of web pages and is made of code representing the language and optionally the country code of the same language.

Let us further discuss the following points on web browser language settings:
  • Language settings in web browsers
  • Browser specific issues in language preferences
  • Tips to configure web browser’s language

Language settings in web browsers

If you have no need to frequently view the web pages in different languages, the local (default) settings done at your browser settings is enough. For example if you own a French version of the browser, the browser communicates to the server and the requested page comes with the language setting displayed on the web page itself. An important thing to note is that the language preference settings are not the same as the user interface preferences of the browser itself but the settings of the web pages that are loaded in your computer. Hence the code that renders the page on your system has built in capability defined and it helps to alter these settings itself.

Browser specific issues in language preferences

If you have never altered the default language preferences of your browser, the user locale settings automatically alter the language accordingly. But in case you have used custom settings then the user locale changes will not affect the language preference settings. Remember that these locale settings allow you to use alternate formats for dates, decimal separator formats etc. Depending on the browser you use, the path to the settings must be known. For example in IE 7 and IE6 you have to get to the menus of tools to internet options to General tab to language preferences. For Firefox the path is found by navigating to Tools to options to Content to languages. Check the paths for the other browsers on similar means of navigation.

Tips to configure web browser’s language

You must find the menu options to navigate to the language preference of your web browser. As discussed above different browser have slightly differing terminology to navigate to this option. Once you are able to navigate to this option you can change the setting for your language preferences. It is also possible to specify alternatives also. The language tags are provided by the major browser and you can use the order of preferences based on these tags. The language tag is two or three letter symbol representing a language, like en for English. You can also choose a sub-tag that defines the country or region. Understanding this easy way to change the preferred language enhances the utility of web pages.



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