With additional language files, you can change the display language on your computer so that you can view wizards, dialog boxes, menus, Help topics, and other items in Windows in a different language.

There are two types of language files:

  • Windows Vista language packs.‌ Windows Vista language packs provide a translated version of most of the user interface. Language packs require a license and are available only with Windows Vista Ultimate and Windows Vista Enterprise. If you are using Windows Vista Ultimate, you can download language packs by using Windows Update. If you are using Windows Vista Enterprise, contact your system administrator for information about installing additional languages.

    To get additional language packs by using Windows Update

    Language packs are available through Windows Update as optional updates; they are not installed automatically.

    1. Open Windows Update by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking All Programs, and then clicking Windows Update.

    2. Click Check online for updates from Microsoft Update, and then wait while Windows looks for the latest updates for your computer.

    3. If any updates are found, click Optional updates are available.

    4. Under Windows Vista Ultimate Language Packs, select only the language pack you want (installing all of them might take up too much space on your drive).

    5. Click OK, and then click Install updates. Administrator permission required If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation. You might have to restart your computer.


    • If Windows doesn't find any updates when you click Check online for updates from Microsoft Update, wait a day, and then try again.

  • Windows Vista Language Interface Pack (LIP).‌ Windows Vista LIPs provide a translated version of the most widely used areas of the user interface. LIPs are freely available to download, and most LIPs can be installed and used on any edition of Windows Vista. Because not all of the user interface is translated, LIPs require at least one parent language. The parts of the user interface that are not translated into the LIP language are displayed in the parent language. When you download a LIP, you get the parent language requirements for that language. The parent language pack needs to be installed before the LIP can be installed. For more information, including a list of languages available for downloading, go to the Microsoft Local Language website.


  • Language packs and LIPs will work only on a genuine copy of Windows Vista. For more information, see What is genuine Windows?