Add a language to Windows Server 2016 using language packs
The following tables show the supported language packs for Windows desktop editions and Windows Server, and supported language interface packs (LIPs) for Windows desktop editions. LIPs are available for Windows desktop releases, but are not available for Windows Server. For more information, see Language packs.
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The version of the language, LIP, or Feature on Demand must match the version number. For example, you can neither add a Windows 10 version 1809 LIP to Windows 10 version 1803 image, nor add a Windows Server 2019 language pack to Windows Server 2016.
This article describes an update that the Microsoft .NET Framework 4.7 Language Pack is available for Windows 10 Version 1607 and Windows Server 2016. You must download and install the following .NET Framework 4.7 ENU Installer before you install the language packs:
The .NET Framework 4.7 Language Pack contains localized resources for supported languages. It contains translated error messages and other UI text for languages other than English. If you do not install a language pack, this text is displayed in English. You can install multiple language packs on one computer, each for a different language.The .NET Framework 4.7 Language Pack is available on Windows Update and on Windows Server Update Service (WSUS). It will be offered as an optional update on Windows Update. This update bundles the individual language packs for the 23 languages that are listed in the following table. Each of these language packs is installed as the listed corresponding article number instead of as KB3186607.
As far as I can tell, language packs are available for all editions of Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016. To help you reduce the size of your image, language packs in Windows 10 are split into the following language components and Features On Demand:
Additional language packs, the so-called Features on Demand, are available for example for spelling, handwriting and speech recognition (Cortana) and more. These have to be downloaded separately and are available for Windows 10 only. They are NOT included within the source files of a language pack. More details are provided later on in this section.
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Change the display language of Windows Server 2016 with language pack
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Besides language packs for the operating system, Microsoft offer language packs for applications such as Microsoft Office. These have to be downloaded separately. The availability of language packs for third-party software depends on the vendor. Acrobat Reader for example support more than 30 languages. These are not within the scope of this article. In this article I only deal with language packs and the Features on Demand.
Please be aware that the list of available languages can differ for individual components. For example, the available language packs for Windows and for Office do not have to match. The same goes for third-party software. When planning your language strategy you should count with the fact that you will not find all languages for all products.
By default, when you add a language in Windows, only the keyboard layout is added. The actual Windows display language (the language (interface) pack) has to be downloaded separately. The same goes for additional language packs for handwriting, speech and so forth.
Microsoft separates between a language pack (LP) and a language interface pack (LIP). As per Microsoft, a LIP is a "high-quality, localized "skin" for emerging or minority language markets. [...] A LIP provides the desktop user with an approximately 80% localized user experience by translating a reduced set of user interface (UI) elements. A LIP [...] has a dependency on a base language pack of Windows.The difference between an LP and a LIP is "the level of localization in comparison to language pack (LP) packages: LIP packages provide the desktop user with the most frequently accessed user interface and basic user assistance support (help files). In addition, a LIP is installed as a language add-on on top of an existing LP with base language dependency (Catalan LIP can only be installed on top of the Spanish or French LP, Welsh LIP can only be installed on top of the English LP). In addition, once a LIP is installed, switching the user interface between the LIP language and the LP base language is possible for users on all versions of Windows.
Also, as per Microsoft; "Windows Server and Windows 10 language packs are not interchangeable. Windows Server language packs cannot be used on Windows 10, and Windows 10 language packs cannot be used on Windows Server."
In total, there are 38 language packs available for Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016. In comparison, for Windows Server 2012 R2, only 18 language packs are available.In total, there are 72 language interface packs (LIPs) available for Windows 10. LIPs are not supported on Windows Server. So keep this in mind when you have both notebooks/desktops and for example Microsoft Remote Desktop Services or Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (previously known as XenApp or XenDesktop) in your organization. You may not be able to install the same languages on all your workers!
A language pack is installed in the directory %SystemRoot%\System32\%Language-ID%, so for example C:\Windows\System32\es-ES. The size of a language pack is about 50 MB. In case you want to install all 38 language packs, you increase the size of you image with about 2 GB. Language interface packs only use up around 10 MB of space. Features on Demand are between 5 and 70 MB in size. Most of them are around 10 to 20 MB though.
IT professionals require the offline installation sources to be able to deploy the language packs using the software deployment tool of their choice (e.g. MDT, SCCM, Citrix App Layering). To download the language packs I used my Visual Studio Subscription (MSDN). Select one of the links below for more details:
The download for Windows Server 2016 Language Pack is a single ISO file (about 2,6 GB in size) that contains all 38 languages. On the Microsoft Volume License Site or on the Microsoft Visual Studio Subscription website, search for language pack and you will find all language packs for all supported operating systems.
The folder langpacks contains the language packs that need to be installed on Windows. The language files in the folder Windows Preinstallation Environment are used to localize your WinPE image. Within the folder langpacks, each language has its own subfolder.
The language pack for Windows 10 is also a single ISO file, but much larger (more than 7 GB) compared to the one for Windows Server 2016. The reason for this is that the download for Windows 10 includes more source files. Besides the 38 language packs (LPs) also included in the ISO file for Windows Server 2016, the Windows 10 ISO file also includes 72 language interface packs (LIPs) and includes both 32-bit and 64-bit source files.
The Features on Demand consists of two ISO files (between 3,5 and 4,5 GB in size). You can download either the 32-bit or 64-bit source files. For each version of Windows 10, the download consists of two parts (one ISO file per part). The languages for handwriting, speech, etc. are included in Part 1.
The script below installs the Windows language pack using my installation template, which includes detailed logging and error handling. Also, the functions used in the scripts require my PowerShell Functions Library to be present on the local system. This means that before you can use the script, you need to copy the PowerShell module file DS_PowerShell_Function_Library.psm1 to the local system first.
To manually change the Windows display language on a machine with Windows Server 2016 version 1607, go to Control Panel \ Language. In the menu the entry Add a language adds the keyboard layout for a particular language. Under Options you can enable the Windows display language if it has been installed.
In this window you can add a language. After adding a language, Windows checks if there is a language pack available for it. In case a language pack is found, you have the option to download and install it. Click the Options button.
Changing the language in this multi-string registry value accomplishes the same result as when changing the language manually using the GUI. Of course, for everything to work the language pack has to already be installed on the local system.
To manually change the Windows display language for Windows Apps and Store, Edge and Internet Explorer, on a machine with Windows Server 2016 version 1607 installed, go to Control Panel \ Language. In the menu, move the preferred language to the top of the list.
A Windows language (interface) pack does not modify the system specific code page for non-Unicode programs. Please see the article Configuring the time zone and code page with Group Policy for detailed information on how to change the system's code page.
Could you please be more specific and tell me what exactly is not working for you? Are you referring the the script to install the language pack, or are you talking about the Group Policy (Preference) to configure the default language for the user?
I have Windows 10 1607 with several installed language packs if I start Windows update will be update installed, but if I switch to another language will install the same update again. Do you have any idea how I can update multiple languages image?
My apologies for the late reply. I have been extremely busy lately. I am not sure I understand your problem. What do you mean that all downloads only work with newly installed servers? When you download a language pack as described in the section -windows-languages-and-language-packs/#ObtainWindows10LP, you are not able to install this on an already installed server or W10 machine? And in your second remark, if I understand it correctly, you say that after you install Windows updates the already installed language packs do not work? Could you please elaborate on these issues? Which Windows version are you using? The more details you can provide the better.