The Windows operating system offers a Korean keyboard option, which you can implement by following the procedure detailed below. You can then easily switch between English and Korean by hitting the ALT key. Activating this option makes little change in your computer (except for a small icon showing up on the desktop), and you can always deactivate this option.
In the Korean mode, your keyboard will work as shown above. All the consonants are entered by the left hand; all the vowels (except the one marked red in the figure) are entered by the right hand. The shift keys are not used often in the Korean mode, since there is no capital letter in Korean. You need shift keys for a small number of compound consonants (shift + Q, W, E, R and T keys) and two compound vowels (shift + O and P keys).
How to Implement the Korean Keyboard Option (in Windows 7 or Vista)
1) Open the Control Panel.
2) Select “Clock, Language and Region”.
3) Under the “Region and Language” category, click “Change Keyboards or Other Input Methods”; “Region and Language” dialog box will pop up.
4) Under the “Keyboards and Languages” tab, click “Change Keyboards”.
5) The top half of the panel is “Default Input Language” - do not change it. The bottom half is “Installed Services”. In it, click “Add”; “Add Input Language” box will pop up.
6) Scroll down and find “Korean”; expand the + sign next to “Korean”; expand the + sign next to “keyboard”.
7) Check “Microsoft IME” (2nd box). Do not check "Korean" (1st box) or "Show More” (3rd box).
At this point, your "Add Input Language" window should look like this:
8) Click “OK”.
9) Click “Apply” and “OK”. (If you want to deactivate this option in the future, simply take the steps in reverse.)
The Korean keyboard option is now available. At this point, you will see a language bar (marked “EN” [for English]) in the lower right corner of your screen.
If the language bar floats in the top right corner of your desktop like this,
you can leave it there or close it by clicking the tiny square (above the tiny triangle in the bar) - it will come back to the bottom task bar.
How to Use the Korean Keyboard Function
Locate the language bar (marked “EN”) in the lower right corner of your screen. Click the “EN” sign once - a box will expand. Select "KO" (instead of "EN").
The language bar will then horizontally expand as shown below, giving you control over four features.
Of the four, you will be dealing with Control 1 and Control 3 only.
Control 1 (KO or EN): This shows you whether you are in the Korean-enabled mode or English-only mode. You can shift between the two modes by clicking the KO or EN label and choosing the mode you want.
Control 3 (A or ): Being in the "KO" mode doesn't necessarily mean that your keyboard is ready input Korean characters. It means you can activate Korean input when you want. The default in the "KO" mode is still English (hence the "A" sign). When want to type Korean, hit the ALT key on the right side of your keyboard. (The keyboard has two ALT keys; only the right one works for this purpose.) You will then see:
Note that Control 3 now shows a Korean character,, instead of "A". Your keyboard is now ready to input Korean characters. You can toggle between Korean and English by hitting the right ALT key anytime.
The other two controls (Control 2 and Control 4) are what you probably won’t need at all. (These two are explained at the bottom of this article for the sake of completeness.)
When writing Korean on paper, you need to arrange the letters (sound elements) into squre-shaped clusters (syllables). But on a computer keyboard, you can simply type the letters in a linear sequence. The computer will automatically assemble them into syllabic clusters.
Let's type the Korean word for "summer", which looks like this:
This 2-syllable word contains 5 phonetic elements:
Before typing, make sure your language bar shows "KO" and you have already converted the "A" symbol (Control 3) to the symbol, using the ALT key.
Now, type the 5 necessary elements one at a time (not the commas in the list – just the Korean characters with no space). You will see that the computer uses the first 2 elements to form the first cluster and the last 3 to make the second.
For another example, let's type the Korean word for "fruit", which looks like this:
Like "summer", this word has 2-syllables and 5 phonetic elements:
Type those 5 elements. You will see that, this time, the computer uses the first 3 elements to construct the first syllable, and the last 2 to make the second. But you don't need to concern yourself with the rules behind it. It's done automatically by the computer.
What has been covered so far is all you need to be able to type Korean.
What are the two other controls in the language bar?
Control 4: You won't need this unless you have deep understanding of the etymology of Korean words. Control 4 is used to convert Korean syllables written in phonetic alphabet (as is the case with most modern Korean texts) into classical Asian logograms ("Chinese" characters), which had been used predominantly in Korea until the early to mid-20th century.
Control 2: Recall that, in Step 7 above, it was recommended that you check only the second box (Microsoft IME) in the "Add Input Language" window. If you mistakenly checked the first box ("Korean") as well, that window would look like this:
With both boxes checked in this manner (not recommended), you will have two choices, which you can see by clicking and holding Control 2:
Note the small, white window appearing above the language bar, having two options.
The additional option (marked "Korean" and represented by a gray keyboard icon) apparently does not work as a Korean keyboard. Having this option only interferes with the the Microsoft IME function from time to time.
If you happen to have the two options implemented, your keyboard may occasionally get stuck in the "gray keyboard mode" for unknown reasons (symptom: Korean entry becomes impossible, and the ALT key stops working). When you have this problem, you can use Control 2 to move back to the Microsoft IME mode. If you checked only the Microsoft IME box to begin with in Step 7 above, you won't have this problem, and you won't need Control 2 at all.