Creating Spanish Accents on your Laptop or Computer

Creating Spanish accents on letters on your computer

Ever wondered how to make the accents in Spanish on your computer? You have several options for this, and it can be kind of convoluted. I've explained several of the options below.

  • Cheat. Go to Google language tools, write the word in English and then hopefully it provides the proper translation with all the accents. The problem is that words often have many meanings, so only rely for this for spelling, not for translation. Copy the word and paste it into your document.
  • Copy and paste the accented letters from some other Spanish document (also something I used to do - still cheating here)
  • Add the Spanish Keyboard option to your PC computer or Laptop . This is easy to toggle on and off with an icon at the bottom of your keyboard.  This is what I use because it is easy to Toggle on and off when you choose the option to show it on your task bar. However, the keyboard acts slightly differently. If you've used an Internet café and found you couldn't use the apostrophe key, you will know what I mean. Instructions are included below the ASCII codes.
  • Use the ASCII codes. This is a series of keys you press to create the accents. This works in any program that supports the ASCII codes, which all Microsoft products do as well as standard forms on the Internet (including Mozilla browsers). I can't prove that these codes will work on a PC or a Mac, but I've tested the PC Laptop codes since I work on a laptop. On laptops, you have to press the Num Lk or "Numbers Lock" to make the keys in the center respond to the codes - you may also have to turn on Num Lk on regular PC keyboards as well. There is a light that indicates when it is on.


PC ASCII
(use numbers on number pad while holding down the Alt key)
Laptop PC ASCII
Use numbers in color in the center of the keypad. Mine are on the M J K L U I O 7 8 9 keys- NumLk must be on
Macintosh ASCII
Press option+__, then release and press the letter you want. For example, "option+e then the letter e" gives you é
á
Alt + 0225
Fn + Alt + 0225
Option + e then a
é
Alt + 0233
Fn + Alt + 0233
Option + e then e
í
Alt + 0237
Fn + Alt + 0237
Option + e then i
ñ
Alt + 0241
Fn + Alt + 0241
Option + n then n
ó
Alt + 0243
Fn + Alt + 0243
Option + e then o
ú
Alt + 0250
Fn + Alt + 0250
Option + e then u
¿
Alt + 0191
Fn + Alt + 0191
Opt + shift + ?
¡
Alt + 0161
Fn + Alt + 0161
Opt + 1
Á
Alt + 0193
Fn + Alt + 0193
Option + e then Shift a
É
Alt + 0201
Fn + Alt + 0201
Option + e then Shift e
Í
Alt + 0205
Fn + Alt + 0205
Option + e then Shift i
Ñ
Alt + 0209
Fn + Alt + 0209
Option + n then Shift n
Ó
Alt + 0211
Fn + Alt + 0211
Option + e then Shift o
Ú
Alt + 0218
Fn + Alt + 0218
Option + e then Shift u

Adding the Spanish Keyboard option to your PC computer or Laptop .

  1. Log On
  2. Click the Start button
  3. Click on Control Panel
  4. Click Regional and Language Options - a new window will pop up
  5. Click the Languages tab
  6. Click on the Details button
  7. Click the Add button - a new window will pop up
  8. Select United States-International (keyboard layout menu)
  9. Click OK
  10. Click Apply
  11. Read the instructions for "Using the U.S. - International Keyboard" below.

Note: You will now have a keyboard icon on the task bar (usually on the right side). To switch between keyboard layouts click the keyboard icon on the task bar and choose which layout you want to use. Changing the keyboard layout will only affect the log on profile used. No other users will be affected.

Windows Vista

  1. Start-->Control Panel-->Clock, Language, Region-->Change Keyboards
  2. New Window: Click the Change Keyboards button
  3. New Window: Click the Add button
  4. Select United States-International keyboard
  5. Click OK
  6. From drop down menu (Default Input Language) select United States International

Using the U.S. - International Keyboard on your PC or Laptop

Once you have the international Keyboard working, you will find it now reacts differently. When struck, the single apostrophe (') key, does nothing. To type the single apostrophe now, you must strike the single apostrophe key and then strike the space bar. When you strike the space bar, the apostrophe will appear.

The next thing to note is that the quotes (") key behaves the same way as the apostrophe key. You must first strike the quotes key and then strike the space bar in order to create the (") symbol. These two minor inconveniences are more than made up for by the ease with which you can now type the special characters.

To type the special characters, two keystrokes are required. To type the á, you need only strike the apostrophe key and then the letter a. The other characters are just as easy:

To type the special punctuation characters, you need to hold down on the Alt key while you strike the appropriate punctuation mark. On some keyboards, only one of the two Alt keys will work for this, usually the left.

Key combinations

á = ' + a

é = ' + e

í = ' + i

ó = ' + o

ú = ' + u

ñ = ~ + n

¡ = Alt (hold down) + !

¿ = Alt (hold down) + ?

 

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