GNOME Tamil localization works have just begun. There are few applications for which Tamil menus are translated, and are available. But it is yet to become the official member of GNOME i18n distribution.

In order to use them, download the currently available files from:


and put them into the directory /usr/share/locale/ta/LCMESSAGES/.

Under GNOME Control Panel you have set the fonts (both in Themes and the Window Manger applet) to a TSCII font.

You need to create binary messages from the po files. This is done as follows:

msgfmt xxx.po -o /usr/share/locale/ta/LCMESSAGES/xxx.mo.

Note that the binary messages files contain an extension .mo as opposed to .po for the text file.

In order for you see Tamil, you have to set the locale to Tamil.

If you are using bash as your shell, then enter the following line in your home directory.

    export LANG=ta
    export LANGUAGE=ta
    export LC ALL=ta

Restart the X server. You should see Tamil menus and dialogs in many of the GNOME enabled applications. Once again, please consider contributing to the Tamil GNOME Project; we need a lot of volunteers. Contact Dinesh or through tamilinix yahoogroups.