Cyrillic for MS Windows Netscape

same - in Russian ( zdes - po-russki )

Author: Paul Gorodyansky
(click on the name for contact information)
              This page - about Netscape.
More 'Russification' - 'phonetic' keyboard, Office97, converters, etc. - on my Home Page "Useful Cyrillic (Russian) stuff"

You can read and write in Browser in News(Discussions) in Mail(Messenger)

Instructions for Cyrillic (mostly Russian) in MS Windows Netscape ver. 1,2,3,4.
This page is large, but there is no need to read everything. Read the beginning and then - only chapters that explain your version of Netscape, and even within such chapter read only those sections that explain Netscape under your version of Windows - 95/98, NT 4.0/2000, or 3.1/3.11.


This is a local copy of my article (legal mirror). Main locations where I always have the most recent version of this article are:

To Webmasters: PLEASE, do NOT copy the files of this article to your server! Instead, put LINKS to the main location(s) listed above.
All unauthorized copies that I found were very old. It is bad for the readers of such outdated copies (they will not be able to tune-up Netscape correctly), and also it is bad for me - such readers often ask me about something that is already covered in the current version of the article.


This is the only instruction on the Web that lets you tune-up MS Windows Netscape for Cyrillic completely. All other instructions devoted to this subject lack one or more of this article's features:

                                                                           

TABLE OF CONTENTS

This is a step-by-step instruction, therefore I suggest to read it in the order of this Table of Contents (but skip the chapters explaining different from yours versions of Netscape).

See references in Chapter 8 for the subjects that are NOT covered in this article.

  1. Free Russian fonts for Windows


  2. Selecting fonts in Netscape
  3. Netscape ver. 2,3 - tune-up for Russian
  4. Netscape ver. 4 - tune-up for Russian.
  5. How to read Cyrillic in Netscape 2,3,4. Problems and tests.

  6. How to write in Russian in Netscape 2,3,4
  7. Netscape and other programs
  8. Links to the Russification subjects that are NOT discussed here -

1. Russian Fonts for MS Windows

WWW: two types of Cyrillic encoding for a Windows client

Ok, you work with MS Windows and would like to browse Russian language Web sites.
But different authors of such Web pages use different methods to represent Cyrillic letters, that is, they use different encoding methods.
(An encoding determines where in the full character set Cyrillic letters are located).

For a MS Windows user there are 2 different Cyrillic encodings on the Web:

The encoding method is directly related to a font used, that is, fonts are made for a specific encoding.
If an author of a page used a font of KOI8-R encoding family for a Russian text, and a user is trying to read this page in Netscape using a font that belongs to Cyrillic CP-1251(win) encoding, then such user will not be able to read this page at all.

Thus, you need to install 2 sets of Cyrillic True Type Windows fonts to be able to work with both types of Cyrillic Web pages in your Netscape:

(exception - new Netscape 4, where you need only CP-1251(win) fonts - browser itself does necessary translations from KOI8-R to CP-1251, and vice versa)



Mail and News NOTE: All Russian language Newsgroups use only KOI8-R encoding (see for example relcom.talk).
KOI8-R is a standard for Russian on the Internet - Usenet Newsgroups, telnet, e-mail, etc. That is, almost all Russian e-mail letters also are sent in KOI8-R.

KOI8-R is a network encoding, while CP-1251(win) is a local encoding of Russian letters on a computer with MS Windows operating system.
Other local encodings can be Macintosh Cyrillic, DOS-866 Cyrillic, etc., and KOI8-R serves as a transport encoding, 'common ground' that lets messages from all these computers with different Cyrillic encodings exchange Russian messages over the Internet.

The simplest example is Newsgroups. A Newsgroup can be read by a user of Mac, Windows, or Unix. Then messages in this Newsgroup just must use one common Cyrillic encoding for a user of each platform to be able to read it.
Now imagine that this News Server keeps a thread where one message is from a Unix user - in ISO-8859-5, another message is from a DOS user - in CP-866, another one from a Windows user - in Windows-1251.
How a News client program will show you this thread?
This is why most News Servers keep all messages in KOI8-R.


Generally, World Wide Web uses 2 methods to show you a text on your screen:

Each type of a page requires its own type of font to be used in your browser:

So, you need to install at least 4 new Cyrillic True Type fonts in your Windows:

(Netscape 4 needs only CP-1251 fonts)

To the Table of Contents


Cyrillic CP-1251 fonts included into Windows

Some free Russian fonts collected from the Web (KOI8-R and CP-1251) are offered in the next section.
But CP-1251 is a standard Russian encoding in MS Windows, so for this encoding you may, instead, use Cyrillic fonts of better quality included into your Windows:



So, if you:

then you can skip the rest of the Chapter 1 - instructions for those free KOI8-R and CP-1251(win) Russian fonts that I collected from the Web - and go directly to the Chapter 2, "Selecting fonts in Netscape".

To the Table of Contents


Free non-Microsoft Russian fonts

1. Download suggested fonts from the Web

Below you will find download locations and descriptions for free Cyrillic fonts - both KOI8-R and Windows-1251 encoding - that I found on the Internet, tested, and suggest to use for the WWW-related work under MS Windows.

Important. As it was explained in the previous section, you need these old non-Microsoft fonts only in the following cases:



All these free fonts allow you to read both English and Russian on the same page.

You need to create a directory(folder) on your PC where you will collect these font files, for example, C:\RUSFONTS.

I have created a single file(archive) ForWWW.zip that includes all these free Russian fonts.
           
You can download this file from one of the sites listed in a table below.
To download a file, you just need to click on its underlined name in a table below. Then Netscape offers you to SAVE FILE.
In this SAVE FILE dialog, you need to select the directory(folder) that you created to keep font files - C:\RUSFONTS.

NOTE: If Netscape begins, instead, showing a content of this file on screen, then try to download it again, but this time hold down a SHIFT key on your keyboard while clicking on that file.
Two locations of Russian fonts file:
in the U.S. in Russia
file ForWWW.zip file ForWWW.zip
           
You need to extract font files from my archive ForWWW.zip after downloading, that is, you need to open this .zip file - archive, and get all the files stored inside it.
You can extract files from the archive using a shareware program WinZip for Windows if you have it OR simply with a small free MS DOS program pkunzip.
If you don't have pkunzip program, then get it by downloading file pkunzip.exe into your Windows directory(folder).

To extract font files using pkunzip, open an MS-DOS window first:

and then type these two MS DOS commands (first one switches to the needed directory(folder) and second one does the extraction):
                C:\........>    cd \RUSFONTS
                C:\RUSFONTS>    pkunzip forwww.zip 

2. Descriptions for downloaded free fonts

NOTE: I have collected into ForWWW.zip such fonts that work with all versions of Netscape and all Windows platforms. If you found somewhere another version of the same font, it may not work correctly with Netscape or with some Windows platform (for example, NT 4.0).

Remember, to work with Cyrillic in Netscape, you need to install at least 4 new Cyrillic True Type fonts in your Windows:

(Netscape 4 needs only CP-1251 fonts)

   
1. These are KOI8-R fonts:

   
2. These are CP-1251(Windows) fonts:

To the Table of Contents


3. How to install these free fonts in Windows

Follow instructions below for Windows 3.1,3.11 and for Windows 95/98/NT 4.0/2000 to install downloaded free fonts in your Windows system.

Windows 95/98 and Windows NT 4.0/2000:

  1. Click on START, SETTINGS, CONTROL PANEL
  2. Click on FONTS icon
  3. In the menu, select FILE, INSTALL NEW FONTS
  4. Select folder, where you have all these unpacked font files - C:\RUSFONTS.
    There is a button on the right - SELECT ALL. Click on it
  5. Click on OK button

Windows 3.1, 3.11:

  1. In Windows 3.1, you have such group (window) as MAIN. It is where, for example, File Manager program is located.
    In this MAIN group there is an icon CONTROL PANEL. Open this application by double-click.
  2. You will see, in this CONTROL PANEL window, several icons. One of them is FONTS.
    Open now this FONTS application by double-click.
  3. You will see a list of fonts and several buttons on the right.
    One of them is ADD. Click on it. It will offer you to choose drive and directory.
  4. Select directory, where you have all these unpacked font files - C:\RUSFONTS.
    There is a button on the right - SELECT ALL. Click on it.
  5. Click on OK button. You will be back to the screen with the list of fonts.
  6. Click on CLOSE button.


Now you have these Russian fonts installed in Windows and ready to use in any Windows application that allows fonts selection, including Netscape.

To the Table of Contents


  

2. Selecting fonts in Netscape

NOTE: When I write "Netscape 4", I mean Netscape Communicator 4 (more details about the Communicator - in the Chapter 4).

You can select the fonts of your choice in Netscape (from the set of fonts already installed in your Windows).

Netscape 1:

Netscape 2,3: Netscape 4:

Note: Netscape 4 uses different name for Proportional Fonts.
They are called 'Variable Width Fonts' there.

In this Fonts window, you can select a pair of fonts - Proportional and Fixed - for every Encoding that Netscape offers you there.
When you open Fonts window, you see in a small window an Encoding that stands first in a list of all available Encodings:

When you click on the arrow at the right of this small window, you will see a full list of Netscape's Encodings.
Beginning from version 3, Netscape has there Cyrillic Encodings:

To the Table of Contents


  Netscape ver. 1

In Netscape 1 there is only one Encoding in this Fonts window - Latin1 - that can be used for Russian.
So, for each type of Cyrillic page you need to select a corresponding pair of fonts for Latin1 in the window Options / Preferences / Fonts.

For example, for KOI8-R Cyrillic server:

  1) choose Proportional font - 'ER Bukinist KOI-8', size 12
  2) choose Fixed font -        'ROL-K8-Courier', size 10
   
Now you can read Russian pages on such server (Proportional font - for Hypertext screens) and
read some Russian text file in FTP directory at this server (Fixed font - for Plain Text screens).

But because ver. 1 has only one suitable Encoding - Latin1 - you need to select a corresponding pair of fonts (KOI8-R or CP-1251) in this Fonts window every time you want to switch from some KOI8-R page to a CP-1251 page, or back.

To the Table of Contents


   

3. Netscape ver. 2, 3 - tune-up for Russian

This chapter explains a method of tuning-up Netscape 2 and 3 for Russian.
After implementation of this method you will be able to

Chapter 6 explains how to write in Russian in Netscape after the implementation of this this method.

NOTE: Older versions - 2.0, 1.22, 1.1, ... - can not be fully tuned-up for Russian.
You can use Russian in these versions (if you use correct Web fonts that I suggest in this article), but not completely - depending on a version, Cyrillic does not work in some parts of Netscape that are listed above.

NOTE: If you ever want to send Cyrillic e-mail from Netscape 2 and 3, then make sure that you did NOT change its e-mail settings.
Go to Options / Mail and News Preferences, find a tab "Composition", and check that at the top of this window you have the correct setting in "Send and Post" - "Allow 8-bit".



Detailed instructions for this Russian setup are below, but generally you need to do the following:


NOTE
Netscape and different modifications of MS Windows.

Unfortunately, different versions of MS operating systems work differently with Cyrillic, therefore Netscape (and other applications, for example, MS Word) may work nicely under one version of Windows 95, and have problems with Cyrillic under another version of the same Windows 95, for example, Windows 95 OSR2 - 4.00.950 B.
(You can see modification number by using a 'System' icon in Control Panel)

It is known, for example, that Windows NT Service Packs 2,3 and Windows 95 OSR2 have some errors in their multilanguage support, even in the Microsoft's own applications such as MS Word and Excel. See Newsgroups relcom.comp.os.windows and relcom.comp.os.windows.nt.
So, if under your version of Windows, Netscape does not work with Russian as described in this article, then wait for a new version of your Windows operating system or for a new version of Netscape.

For example, I heard that Netscape has problems with Cyrillic under some national versions of MS Windows (German and Hebrew), but can not give any advice, because in both national and regular (where everything is fine) versions of Windows same Netscape installation file was used.
Let's imagine that I am inserting same coin into 10 public phones made by the same manufacturer, and in 3 of them the coin can not go through.
My opinion is that it's not a fault of the 'coin' (Netscape), but the manufacturer's fault, because his various products of the same line (MS Windows) work differently.

To the Table of Contents


     

Here are my instructions - 2-step initial setup for Cyrillic in Netscape 2 and 3.

Step 1. Fonts and Encodings

In version 1 of Netscape, every time I want to change Cyrillic encoding - switch between KOI8-R and CP-1251 - I must change fonts:
go to Options / Preferences / Fonts and change both Proportional and Fixed fonts for Latin1 Encoding.
(I explained it in my "Version 1 Notes" above.)

Beginning from version 2, Netscape allows to select an encoding easily, without changing fonts again and again:

I tested, which Encodings work for Russian, and selected (only once, during initial setup) the following Fonts for the following Encodings in the
Options / General Preferences / Fonts window.


Reminder: to work with Russian in Netscape 2,3 under MS Windows, you must install 2 sets of Russian fonts in Netscape:
  • fonts for KOI8-R encoding
  • fonts for CP-1251(win) encoding



1. KOI8-R encoding - setup of fonts in Netscape 2,3

Go to Options / General Preferences / Fonts,
select suggested Encoding, then select a pair of suggested fonts for this Encoding.
(Remember, to select an Encoding from the list, just click on the arrow at the right of the small window with a title "For the Encoding", where you see 'Latin1' or current encoding).

Encoding
in Netscape 3
Encoding
in Netscape 2.01,2.02
Fonts

Cyrillic(KOI8-R)

Latin2
(Central European)


Now click on OK button.

Netscape 2 NOTE.
KOI8-R fonts must be in Latin2 (Central European) to allow KOI8-R reading/writing in all parts of Netscape 2, including Forms, News, and Mail.
In addition, ver. 2.02 needs KOI8-R fonts also as a User Defined Encoding. See details below, in the section "Version 2.02 - additional setup for News and Mail" and then come back here (f.e. by clicking on Back button of your browser) to continue reading about fonts.

ATTENTION!
Windows NT 4.0 and KOI8-R forms in Netscape 2,3.

Users who live in the countries of the former USSR and who 'Russified' their Windows NT 4.0 by selecting 'region=Russia':
    Start / Settings / Control Panel / Regional Settings
    Russian - Set as system default locale
,

will not be able to read a text on the buttons of KOI8-R forms and in pop-up menus(list boxes) that some forms contain.
(You can check it using forms in a section of Chapter 5 "Test: you read Russian in Netscape")
It can be fixed and if it's your situation - read section "Web forms and Windows NT 4.0" and then come back here (f.e. by clicking on Back button of your browser) to continue reading about fonts.




2. CP-1251(Win) encoding - setup of fonts in Netscape 2,3

Go to Options / General Preferences / Fonts,
select suggested Encoding, then select a pair of suggested fonts for this Encoding.
(Remember, to select an Encoding from the list, just click on the arrow at the right of the small window with a title "For the Encoding", where you see 'Latin1' or current encoding).

Encoding
in Netscape 3
Encoding
in Netscape 2.01,2.02
Fonts

Cyrillic
(it means
CP-1251(win))

Korean - works! :-)

Now click on OK button.

Important!
You have to use in Netscape 2,3 those not very pretty free KOI8-R fonts desribed above, but the situation for CP-1251(win) fonts is better, because Microsoft uses for Russian just CP-1251 encoding!

Therefore, instead of those free CP-1251 fonts 'ER' described above, you, probably, can use in Netscape much nicer looking Cyrillic fonts, included into your Windows system (for example, font "Arial").
This would be definitely a better solution for Cyrillic CP-1251 in Netscape!

Why did I write 'probably'? You will understand it after you read the following notes regarding built-in Cyrillic CP-1251 fonts in Windows 3.x, Windows 95/98, and Windows NT 4.0.

1) Windows 3.1, 3.11 and built-in CP-1251 fonts.

If you have a Russian Windows 3.1,3.11 developed by Microsoft for Russia, then you can use its CP-1251 fonts in Netscape 2,3:
Options / General Preferences / Fonts and then

Encoding
in Netscape 3
Encoding
in Netscape 2.01,2.02
Fonts

Cyrillic
(it means
CP-1251(win))

Korean

  • Proportional font - "Arial Cyr"

  • Fixed font - "Courier New Cyr"

Now click on OK button.

But if you have a regular U.S. version of Windows 3.1,3.11, then you have to use those free CP-1251 fonts 'ER' desribed above, because in this version of MS Windows there are no fonts that contain Russian letters.


2) Windows 95/98 and built-in CP-1251 fonts.

Windows 95/98 has, unlike Windows 3.1, large-size font files that contain symbols of many languages, including Russian. And Russian letters are there in CP-1251(win) encoding!

Therefore, in Netscape you can use for Cyrillic CP-1251 any font from your Windows system that has a Cyrillic-modification, for example, "Arial".
That is, you will use that part of this large file (for example, file Arial.ttf), which contains Russian letters.

The easiest way to check it is to call WordPad editor and look at its list of fonts. You will see, for example, several modifications of "Arial" font that allow to use different parts of this large file: "Arial (Western)"; "Arial (Cyrillic)"; "Arial (Greek)"; etc.

If you do not see such Cyrillic-modifications of your Windows 95/98 fonts, then it means that you need to install an additional software - MS Multilanguage Support.
Here is my short installation instruction for this package:
in the U.S. "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"
in Russia "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"

Thus, in Netscape 2,3 under Windows 95/98 you can install, instead of those free Cyrillic 'ER' fonts of CP-1251(win) encoding, much better fonts included into your Windows.
For example, you can install the following fonts that contain Russian letters: "Arial" and "Courier New".

Unlike WordPad, Netscape 2,3 does not show all modifications of a multilanguage font as a list.
Instead, Netscape asks you to select needed modification.
For this purpose, Netscape ver. 2,3 has, in its Fonts Selection window, a small window called 'Script', where for a multilanguage font you can select a modification: 'Western', 'Cyrillic', 'Turkish', etc.

To install in Netscape 2,3 such fonts for a Cyrillic CP-1251 encoding, you need to go to
Options / General Preferences / Fonts and then

Encoding
in Netscape 3
Encoding
in Netscape 2.01,2.02
Fonts

Cyrillic
(it means
CP-1251(win))

Korean

  • Proportional font - "Arial", Script-Cyrillic

  • Fixed font - "Courier New", Script-Cyrillic

Now click on OK button.

Next small section is devoted to Windows NT 4.0. If it's not of your interest, then you can go directly to the next section: "Step 2. Default Encoding".

To the Table of Contents


3) Windows NT 4.0 and built-in CP-1251 fonts.

Windows NT 4.0 has, unlike Windows 3.1, large-size font files that contain symbols of many languages, including Russian. And Russian letters are there in CP-1251(win) encoding!

Therefore, in Netscape 2,3 instead of those free CP-1251 fonts 'ER' you can try to install for Cyrillic CP-1251 encoding any font from your Windows system that contains Russian letters, for example, font "Arial".

To let a user choose needed part of such large font, Netscape 2,3 has, in its Fonts Selection window, a small window called 'Script', where you can select a modification of a multilanguage font: 'Western', 'Cyrillic', 'Turkish', etc.
That is, you tell what part of this large font file (for example, file Arial.ttf) you want to use.

In Netscape 2 for CP-1251 encoding you can install the following fonts included into your Windows NT 4.0:
Options / General Preferences / Fonts and then for an Encoding "Korean" -

     
Netscape 3 has an error (already corrected in Netscape 4) - it does not work with Russian CP-1251 fonts included into Windows NT 4.0.
That is, even if you install in Netscape 3 font "Arial",Scipt-Cyrillic, you still will not be able to read Cyrillic CP-1251 pages on the Web.

See below a short instruction that corrects this situation, that is, Netscape 3 will work normally with the built-in CP-1251 fonts of Windows NT 4.0.

If you do not need to tune-up Netscape 3 under NT for using fonts such as "Arial" and are happy to use those free CP-1251 fonts 'ER' described above, then skip the following instructions and go directly to the next section: "Step 2. Default Encoding".

To the Table of Contents


NOTE. I suggest to use this instruction people who set up 'region=Russia' in NT, that is, users who 'Russified' their NT (they are usually people who live in the countries of the former USSR) by selecting
    Start / Settings / Control Panel / Regional Settings
    Russian - Set as system default locale
.

If a user, who did not select 'region=Russia', follows this instruction that allows Netscape 3 to work with built-in CP-1251 fonts, then such user will not be able to use Cyrillic fully in CP-1251 forms:

You can see examples of these 2 cases listed above in the Chapter 5, section "Test: you read Russian in Netscape".
This problem for users who did not 'Russify' their NT can be fixed. If it's your situation and you still want to use NT's built-in Russian fonts instead of the free fonts 'ER', then read section "Web forms and Windows NT 4.0" and after that come back here (f.e. by clicking on Back button of your browser) to continue reading about fonts.

Here is the instruction that allows Netscape 3 under Windows NT 4.0 work normally with the built-in CP-1251 fonts such as "Arial", etc.:

  1. Exit Netscape
  2. Add new item to a Netscape's part of NT Registry, asking Netscape 3 to use Unicode fonts of NT:
    in your Windows Explorer, go to the directory(folder) where you downloaded my font files - C:\RUSFONTS and double-click on a file called NN3_NT4.reg.
    You should see a notification message that Registry was updated successfully.

Now, when you call Netscape 3, you will be able to work with Cyrillic fonts (of Windows-1251 encoding) that are included into your Windows NT 4.0:
Options / General Preferences / Fonts and then for an Encoding "Cyrillic" (it means Cyrillic CP-1251(win)) -

(After this tune-up of the registry, you will not be able anymore to work in Netscape 3 with those free CP-1251 fonts 'ER' that were described above:
even if you install them in Netscape, you will see only 'squares' instead of a Russian text on a Cyrillic CP-1251 Web page, unless you convert those fonts. The conversion is discussed in a section of this chapter called "Web forms and Windows NT 4.0")

To the Table of Contents


   

Step 2. Default Encoding

Reminder: All Russian language Newsgroups use only KOI8-R encoding (see for example relcom.talk).
KOI8-R is a standard for Russian on the Internet - Usenet Newsgroups, telnet, e-mail, etc. (that is, almost all Russian e-mail letters also are sent in KOI8-R).
Unlike the Internet, Microsoft Windows has a different standard for Russian - CP-1251 encoding.

By experimenting with Netscape, I found out that in order to use KOI8-R everywhere in Netscape (Forms, News, Mail,...), KOI8-R setting must be selected as your Default Encoding:

You need to do it only once during this initial setup.

2-step initial setup is finished!

To the Table of Contents


How to select a Russian encoding for a page or Mail/News

So, I selected (only once, during Initial Setup) Cyrillic fonts in
Options / General Preferences / Fonts,
and never go to this Fonts window again, never select fonts again (as I needed to do in ver.1).

Beginning from version 2, Netscape offers an easy way of switching from one encoding to another, without changing fonts (you sure need to do first my "2-step Initial Setup" described above):

Netscape ver. 2 and 3

For example, I go to a KOI8-R site after I was on a CP-1251 page.
Or, I want to open Mail/News window where only KOI8-R is used.

It means that I need to switch to KOI8-R encoding :

  1. Go to Options / Document Encoding

  2. Select my KOI8-R setting
    (that is, the Encoding, for which I have installed my KOI8-R fonts during "Initial Setup") :

    • in ver. 3 -- Cyrillic(KOI8-R)
    • in ver. 2 -- Central European (Latin2)

Later I decided to connect to some CP-1251 page.

I need to switch to CP-1251 encoding :

  1. Go to Options / Document Encoding

  2. Select my CP-1251 setting
    (that is, the Encoding, for which I have installed my CP-1251 fonts during "Initial Setup") :

    • in ver. 3 -- Cyrillic(Win1251)
    • in ver. 2 -- Korean

NOTE:
I do not go often to Options / Document Encoding :
I use KOI8-R in Netscape most of the time. When a server offers me to choose an encoding(KOI8-R or CP-1251) , I select KOI8-R.
It is not because I prefer KOI8-R, but just because I go often to News where only KOI8-R is used.

Using KOI8-R for Web pages allows me do not switch again and again between KOI8-R and CP-1251 when I go from Browser window to News window or back.

To avoid switching encodings, I use KOI8-R for English servers, too (remember, all Cyrillic fonts mentioned in this article, allow you to read both English and Russian text on the same Web page).

So, I need to change an encoding very seldom, may be once a month - when I go to a server that uses only CP-1251 (most servers allow users to choose an encoding).

To the Table of Contents


 

Cyrillic in Bookmarks window of Netscape 2,3

When you select Bookmarks / Add Bookmark for some Web page, the Title of this page (a blue line above Netscape menu) is stored as a Name of an item in your Bookmarks.
Some Russian language Web pages have their Titles in Russian - KOI8-R or CP-1251, depending on a page's encoding.

So, when you open your Bookmarks window fully (for example, by pressing Ctrl/B), you can read KOI8-R Names but not CP-1251 Names, or vice versa (it depends on your Default Encoding).

I use KOI8-R in Netscape most of the time (see "NOTE" above).
So, all my Cyrillic Names in Bookmarks are in KOI8-R.
This is why I replace CP-1251 Names in my Bookmarks with English ones:

  1. I go to my Bookmarks window and place a cursor on such unreadable CP-1251 item.

  2. I select Item / Properties in a menu and replace this CP-1251 Name with some English text.

NOTE. In the browser window (not in Bookmarks window) you can NOT see readable KOI8-R Russian in a Title of a page (top blue line of the browser window), because Netscape uses a system font for it.
(For CP-1251 pages with Russian Title, the title will be readable only if you have Russian Windows where system fonts are CP-1251 fonts).

For the same reason you can not see a KOI8-R Bookmark item if you are not in the full Bookmark window (that opens by Ctrl/B) and just doing a quick look at your bookmarks by a single-click on a word Bookmark in Netscape's menu.


This section is about Netscape 2,3 under Windows NT 4.0. If you do not work with NT, you can skip it and:
go directly to the next Chapter 5 - "How to read Cyrillic in Netscape"
or go to the last part of this chapter - Netscape 2 stuff
or go up to the Table of Contents

        

Web forms in Netscape 2,3 under Windows NT 4.0

Known problems under NT - unreadable text on buttons and in the selection lists(menus) of a form (can be verified using forms in a section of Chapter 5 "Test: you read Russian in Netscape"):

 
Solution:
Forms problems can be solved by modifying those free non-Microsoft Russian fonts that were described in the 'Chapter 1' of this article.
There is a free program TTFConv that modifies these fonts by putting a Unicode indicator into a font and thus Windows NT and Netscape begin to work with these fonts better.
(Even Word 97 begins to recognize such non-Microsoft fonts)

You need to download this very small program from here: ftp://ftp.lesobank.ru/pub/soft/Soft_win32/TTF_convert/
  or take a copy I have:
ttfconv.zip

Place this ttfconv.zip archive file into the directory where you put these fonts - C:\RUSFONTS.
(Downloading of a .ZIP file was explained in the Chapter 1 above)

Then you need to extract the files of TTFConv from this archive.
(Opening a .ZIP archive was explained in the Chapter 1 above)

Now you can modify the font files:

  1. Close Netscape
  2. Delete the Russian fonts' registration records from Windows NT:

  3. Run ttfconv.EXE program against these Russian font files placed during the reading of 'Chapter 1' into the folder C:\RUSFONTS:

  4. Register these fonts (already modified) again in Windows NT:



When you start Netscape 3 now, your forms problems will disappear:


 
Next two small sections are devoted to Netscape 2. If you do not need such information, you can skip it and go directly to the Chapter 5 - "How to read Cyrillic in Netscape 2,3,4. Problems and tests".

To the Table of Contents


 

Version 2.02 - additional setup for News and Mail

Version 2.01 works better with Cyrillic than 2.02 - having KOI8-R fonts as Latin2 in 2.01 allows us to use KOI8-R fully in News and Mail.

Version 2.02 has a problem in News and Mail, in a Composition window -
it is impossible to read and write a Subject line when a user wants to do any of the following:

To fix it in 2.02, you need to do the following:

  1. In addition to Latin2, you need to select same pair of KOI8-R fonts for
               User Defined  Encoding in 
    
               Options / General Preferences / Fonts .
         
    Again, you need to do it only once during this initial Fonts setup.

  2. When you want to work with a Composition window
    (Post a message / Reply to a message in News or write a KOI8-R letter in Mail), you need first to switch to

To the Table of Contents


 

Version 2 - problems and solutions

There are some Cyrillic Web pages (probably 20% now, but the number is increasing) that explicitely inform the browser what encoding they use - KOI8-R or CP-1251(win).
Some of these pages have such information within the HTML text of the page.
If you look at the HTML text of such page using View / Document Source, you will see, for example, the following line close to the top:
META ...... CONTENT="text/html; charset=koi8-r"
      or
META ...... CONTENT="text/html; charset=windows-1251" 

More recent versions of Netscape work fine with such pages, but version 2 does not. It creates a problem.

For example, a user went to a Web site using Netscape 2.01 or 2.02, and read that this page is in KOI8-R.
User selected KOI8-R setting in Options / Document Encoding, but still does not see normal Russian text.
So, this is it - he met such modern page that conform to the standards unknown to Netscape 2.

What happens is that Netscape 2 does not know anything about KOI8-R and CP-1251 (versions 3,4 already know about these encodings).
When a page explicitly describes an encoding, and this encoding is unknown to Netscape 2, it uses Latin1 Encoding to show such page.

So, the solution for version 2 is:
In addition to my 2-step setup you need to select corresponding fonts as Latin1 Encoding in
Options / General Preferences / Fonts .

That is, if such modern page is a KOI8-R page, then you need to select your KOI8-R Proportional and Fixed fonts as Latin1 in
Options / General Preferences / Fonts .
If this page uses CP-1251, then you need to select your CP-1251 Proportional and Fixed fonts as Latin1.

Remember, this is a problem of ver. 2 only. Netscape 3,4 works fine with such pages.

Couple examples of such pages:

  1. my Test KOI8-R page for KOI8-R form:
    KOI8-R Test Form

  2. CP-1251 page in Russia:
    "Zhitinsky's Embankment"

You may run into even more rare situation when such modern page has a Form.
With Netscape 2 you can not work with such Form: Again, versions 3,4 work fine with such Forms because they already know about KOI8-R and CP-1251.


Next chapter is devoted to Netscape 4 (Communicator).
If you don't need such information, then you can go directly to the Chapter 5 - "How to read Cyrillic in Netscape 2,3,4. Problems and tests".

To the Table of Contents


     

4. Netscape 4 - tune-up for Russian

This chapter is about Netscape Communicator ver. 4.0 and up.
I will use a shorter name for this product - Netscape 4, while talking about different parts of it - browser, Mail and News part, etc.
Also, I will call

NOTE. Mail part of Netscape 4 is called a Messenger.
In Netscape 4.0x, unlike all previous versions and newer ver. 4.5+, News(Newsgroups) part has another name - Discussions.

If you ever want to send e-mail letters or a message to a Newsgroup from Netscape 4, then first thing you need to do is to change its default mail setting. Communicator allows now to send e-mail letter as a HTML text, that is, a person who receives it, will read the letter as a nice Web page instead of a plain text.
But, as I read in the following professional Newsgroups:

this is not a good thing to do - many e-mail and News programs can NOT receive such letters correctly and also such messages are much larger in size than a plain text messages.

So, you need to tell Netscape, that you do not want your message be sent as HTML, you want it to be a plain text message.
Another very important setting that you need to check:
Russian characters are 8-bit characters (US ASCII characters are 7-bit), and Netscape should not modify them in any way.
So, for these 2 settings you need to go to the corresponding user preferences menu -
  Edit / Preferences / Mail&Newsgroups   (Mail&Groups in ver. 4.0x),
click on '+' sign to see the options, and then:


Comparing to ver. 2,3, Netscape 4 offers a new method for Russian - without KOI8-R fonts and without KOI8-R keyboard tools.

As it was explained in details in Chapter 1, KOI8-R is a network encoding, a 'common ground' for Cyrillic messages travelling on the Internet between computers that may have different local encoding for Cyrillic
(CP-1251(win) for MS Windows computer, CP-866 for DOS/Fido7 and OS/2, ISO-8859-5 for Unix, etc.)

Netscape 4 lets a Windows user work with the local Cyrillic encoding of MS Windows computer - Windows-1251, for both reading and writing.
Netscape 4 performs - when needed - a conversion CP-1251<-->KOI8-R 'behind the scenes' to let a Cyrillic message 'travel' over the Internet in KOI8-R that is, in an network encoding.

Therefore, with Netscape 4 you do NOT need KOI8-R fonts and KOI8-R keyboard tools when you work under MS Windows:



Important! It should be clear after reading of the previous paragraph, that for a Windows user, a current Cyrillic encoding in Netscape 4 has to be Windows-1251:
unlike ver. 2,3, in ver. 4 a user should select Windows-1251 while working with Mail and Newsgroups - Netscape 4 will do the conversion 'behind the scenes', showing you an incoming KOI8-R messages in your local encoding Windows-1251 and converting outgoing messages to KOI8-R before sending them to the Internet.

Netscape 4 works with Cyrillic just fine in all its parts.
The tune-up steps are similar to ones for Netscape 2,3:

Netscape 4's tune-up is not the same for different versions of Windows:


 

Fonts in Netscape 4 under Windows 95/98/NT/2000

This is Step 1 of the Initial Setup.

Windows 95/98/NT/2000 has, unlike Windows 3.1, large-size font files that contain symbols of many languages, including Russian.
And Russian letters are there in CP-1251(win) encoding.
Therefore, you can use for Cyrillic any font from your Windows that has a Cyrillic-modification, for example, "Arial".
That is, you will use that part of this large file (for example, file Arial.ttf), which contains Russian letters.
The easiest way to check it is to call WordPad editor (Start/Programs/Accessories/Wordpad) and look at its list of fonts.
You will see, for example, several modifications of "Arial" font that allow to use different parts of this large file: "Arial (Western)"; "Arial (Cyrillic)"; "Arial (Greek)"; etc.

Windows 95/98 Note.
If you do not see such Cyrillic-modifications of your Windows 95/98 fonts, then it means that you need to install an additional software - MS Multilanguage Support.
Here is my short installation instruction for this package:
in the U.S. "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"
in Russia "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"

Under Windows 95/98/NT/2000 you need to use in Netscape 4 only this type of Russian CP-1251(win) fonts, that is, those included into your Windows.
(Netscape 4 for Windows 95/98/NT/2000 does NOT accept - for Encoding=Cyrillic - those free CP-1251 fonts (from Windows 3.1), that were described in Chapter 1)

In Netscape 4 you do NOT need any KOI8-R fonts.



Selected fonts

Starting, I think, from version 4.05, Netscape 4 comes already with all necessary fonts settings. That is, you do not need to select any fonts for Cyrillic.
You can look at these settings:

  1. Edit / Preferences / Appearance / Fonts
  2. In the small window with a title "For the Encoding", where you see 'Western', select encoding Cyrillic (it means Cyrillic CP-1251(win)).

  3. You will see a pair of fonts for this encoding (from the list of built-in Windows 95/98/NT/2000 fonts that have Cyrillic-modifications):


Next section is devoted to Netscape 4 under Windows 3.x.
You can skip it and begin to read "Step 2. Default Encoding in Netscape 4".

To the Table of Contents


 

Fonts in Netscape 4 under Windows 3.1,3.11

This is Step 1 of the Initial Setup.

Unlike Windows 95/98/NT/2000, there are NO large-size font files, that include symbols of many languages, in Windows 3.x.
There is no such thing as Script-Cyrillic, there are no "Cyr" modifications of Windows 3.x fonts.
Therefore, you need to install those free CP-1251(win) fonts that were described in Chapter 1.

In Netscape 4 you do NOT need any KOI8-R fonts.

So, to select Cyrillic fonts in Netscape 4 for Windows 3.x:

  1. Edit / Preferences / Appearance / Fonts
  2. In the small window with a title "For the Encoding", where you see 'Western', select Encoding Cyrillic (it means Cyrillic CP-1251(win)).

  3. Select a pair of CP-1251 fonts:

  4. Now click on OK button.

NOTE. If you work with Russian version of Windows 3.x (made by Microsoft specially for Russia), then instead of these 'ER' fonts you can install Russian CP-1251 fonts that are included into this version of Windows - "Arial Cyr" and "Courier New Cyr", correspondingly.

To the Table of Contents


 

Default Encoding in Netscape 4

This is Step 2 of the Initial Setup.

In all previous versions of Netscape, this Step 2 was absolutely necessary to let you write in Russian.

Netscape 4 does NOT require you to have a Russian encoding as your Default one, everything works fine without this step, a user just needs to select Windows-1251 when it's time to write.

But it's very handy to have Russian encoding as a Default, anyway:

At the beginning, Netscape 4 has a Western Encoding as a Default, that is, if just after the installation you look into View/CharacterSet (View/Encoding in ver. 4.0x), you will see Western marked.

Here are the steps to make Cyrillic a Default encoding:

1. Main window of Netscape 4:

2. Messenger window (Mail and News(Discussions)):

Open Messenger (Communicator/Messenger in a main menu) and then repeat the steps listed above for the main window of Netscape 4.


Note.
Unfortunately, different versions of MS Windows do not work in the same way in their multilanguage support part. This is why for some versions of MS Windows it is desirable to have Cyrillic(Windows-1251) as a Default Encoding, and for other versions of MS Windows it is a bad idea - it can be cause some problems.

Here are known to me special cases for Netscape 4:
Windows 95 PanEuropean
Do not set Cyrillic as a Default, if you encounter some problems:
one reader reported that he had Cyrillic as a Default and could not switch his keyboard to Russian in the Composition window where he wanted to write an e-mail letter. This person had 'EN' indicator on his Taskbar, pressed Alt/RightShift to switch to 'RU', but nothing happened.


2-step Initial Setup is finished!

To the Table of Contents


Bookmarks in Netscape 4

When you select Communicator / Bookmarks / Add Bookmark for some Web page, the Title of this page (a blue line above Netscape menu) is stored as a Name of an item in your Bookmarks.
Some Russian language Web pages have their Titles in Russian - KOI8-R or CP-1251, depending on a page's encoding.

Netscape 4 uses for Cyrillic CP-1251(win) encoding, including Bookmarks window, and if you tuned-up your Netscape correctly, you will be able to see the Names (Titles) of CP-1251(win) pages.

NOTE. In the browser window (not in Bookmarks window) you can NOT see readable Win-1251 Russian in a Title of a page (top blue line of the browser window), if you have a non-Russian MS Windows:
non-Russian Windows 95 or Windows NT 4.0/2000 where Russian was not selected as 'Region' in Control Panel.
It's because Netscape uses a system font for it.
(For the same reason you never be able to see a KOI8-R title of a KOI8-R page - Windows system font are never KOI8-R fonts).

For the same reason you can not see a Win-1251 Russian Bookmark item if you are not in the full Bookmark window (that opens by Ctrl/B) and just doing a quick look at your bookmarks by a single-click on a word Bookmark in Netscape's menu.

If you want to use your 'old' Bookmarks taken from an older version of Netscape, where Russian Names were in KOI8-R (was explained in Bookmarks section of Netscape 2,3 chapter above) then you need to convert your Bookmark.htm file using KOI8-R-->CP-1251 scheme to make your Bookmarks readable in Netscape 4.
See links to encoding conversion programs in Chapter 8.

To the Table of Contents


How to select a needed encoding in Netscape 4

Based on the Initial Setup described above, you can now select needed Cyrillic encoding for a Web page or for a Messenger(Mail)/Newsgroups(DiscussionGroups) window.

Netscape 4

For example, I go to a CP-1251(Win) site after I was on some KOI8-R page.
Or I want to work in the Messenger(Mail) or Newsgroups(Discussions) window, where - in Netscape 4 - CP-1251 encoding is used.

(Unlike all previous versions, Netscape 4 uses Windows-1251 encoding in Mail(Messenger) and News(Discussions).
Netscape converts your stuff to a network encoding KOI8-R 'on the fly' before sending it to the Internet, and converts all incoming Internet's KOI8-R messages to your local Windows-1251 encoding).

It means that I need to switch to CP-1251(Win) encoding :

  1. Go to View/CharacterSet (View/Encoding   in ver. 4.0x)

  2. Select my CP-1251 setting - Cyrillic(Windows-1251)


Later I decided to connect to some KOI8-R page.

It means that I need to switch to KOI8-R encoding :

  1. Go to View/CharacterSet (View/Encoding   in ver. 4.0x)

  2. Select Cyrillic(KOI8-R)

 
NOTE.
Sometimes users of Netscape 4 receive a letter from some one, who incorrectly tuned-up his mail software. This letter went to the network in Windows-1251 encoding instead of KOI8-R.
Below you'll find a method that allows a Netscape 4 user read such Cyrillic message (you see, Netscape 4 expects incoming Cyrillic messages be in a network encoding KOI8-R and tries to convert the message to a local encoding Windows-1251, thus creating an unreadable text)

Why did I write 'incorrectly' in the above paragraph?
All mail programs (MS IE/OutlookExpress, Netscape, etc.) know that Russian messages should 'travel' on the Internet in a network encoding KOI8-R, and all of them know how to send Russian messages in KOI8-R.
(A user could write a letter in another Russian encoding, local to his computer, but his text should be sent by his mail software to the Internet in KOI8-R).

The sender of such incoming Windows-1251 message should be educated, you should send him a reply asking to resend the letter in KOI8-R, otherwise such person will remain a novice forever and many of his recipients would not be able to read his messages or even would not try to do so.
For example, in Russian Newsgroups Relcom.* and Fido7.* people usually just ignore such CP-1251 messages.

You see, if some one was able somehow to 'brake' his mail software to send a Russian message to the network in Windows-1251, that is, in a local encoding of his Windows computer, then a UNIX user could do the same and send a message in ISO-8859-5 encoding, Macintosh user - in Mac Cyrillic encoding, a FIDO7 user - in his local encoding - CP-866. It will be a complete mess!
There should be (and it is) one and only one network encoding and thus all different computers can exchange Russian messages safely.
Historically, such de-facto standard is KOI8-R and alll servers as well all client-side programs know that KOI8-R is a 'transport' encoding, that is, an encoding in which Cyrillic messages 'travel' over the Internet.

If you receive such incorrectly sent message, you still can read it in Netscape 4 - you need to install these 'old', non-Microsoft Russian fonts "ER", offered in 'Chapter 1', as a UserDefined encoding, and switch to this encoding to read such letter. Then a Russian text of such letter will be readable.
Here is how you achieve this:

You need - only once - select those fonts in Netscape 4:

  1. Edit / Preferences / Appearance / Fonts
  2. In the small window with a title "For the Encoding", where you see 'Western' or 'Cyrillic', select an encoding "User Defined"
  3. Select a pair of CP-1251 fonts offered above, in 'Chapter 1':
  4. Click on OK button.

Now, when you want to read such letter arrived in Windows-1251 encoding, you need to switch to UserDefined to read it:

  1. View/CharacterSet (View/Encoding   in ver. 4.0x)
  2. select User Defined

The following section is for someone who wants to create his own Web page containing some Russian text and use Netscape 4's HTML editor - Composer - for this job.
If you are not interested in such subject, then you can go to the next section "Problems with Cyrillic in Netscape 4"
or return to the To the Table of Contents.

How to create a correct Russian Web page in Composer

If you want to create your own Web page containing Russian text and use Netscape 4's HTML editor - Composer - for this job, you need to tune-up this editor to get a normal and correct HTML page.

Without the tune-up decribed below, you may get 2 incorrect things in your HTML file created with Composer:

To avoid these 2 problems, tune-up your Composer (I will write the steps using a creation of Windows-1251 text as an example. Same steps should be done if you create a KOI8-R page):
  1. Before opening an editor window, make sure that needed Cyrillic encoding is your current encoding, that is for a Windows-1251 text:
    (for a KOI8-R text you would select Cyrillic(KOI8-R) there)

    This will let you to have normal, readable Russian letters in your HTML file, instead of SGML entities representation.

  2. Open a Composer window.
    Find a small window on a toolbar that shows a number (size of a font used).
    At the left of this window there is another window where Netscape shows either a type of a font, for instance, "Variable Width", or a name of a specific font if you selected some, for instance, "Arial".
    Make sure that you do NOT have a name of a specific font there.
    You should see (or select) in this window an item "Variable Width".
    It means that Composer will use the fonts selected for Encoding=Cyrillic in Edit/Preferences/Appearance/Fonts.

    In such case, it will be no hard-coded font names in your page, no HTML tags "FONT FACE=".
    This will be a correctly designed HTML text.



Note. Creation of a KOI8-R page.
Just a reminder - as it was mentioned at the beginning of this chapter, Netscape 4 allows you to have only one set of Russian keyboard tools and fonts - Windows-1251 - which is a standard Russian encoding for a MS Windows environment.
Unlike Netscape 2,3 you do not need KOI8-R fonts and keyboard tools - whenever you need to produce some Russian data in KOI8-R encoding, Netscape does it for you 'behind the scenes'.
So, if you want to create a KOI8-R Web page, you select Cyrillic(KOI8-R), open Composer, and type using your standard Windows keyboard tools, that is Windows-1251 keyboard layout.
When you ask Netscape to save this HTML text on the hard disk of your PC, Netscape will - silently - convert Win-1251 Russian into KOI8-R Russian and the file will be in KOI8-R.
Therefore, when you upload this HTML file to your Web space, future users will see KOI8-R Russian text on your page, as you planned.

To the Table of Contents


             

Problems with Cyrillic in Netscape 4

Below you will find problems descriptions and solutions for the problems.


  
Netscape 4.5+ - problems and solutions


 
Netscape 4.5+ - Composition window issue

You go to the Composition window when you want to write an e-mail or a message to a Newsgroup.

I found in Netscape 4.5+ only one issue (fixable) related to the fact that Mail and News features are tightly integrated in Netscape:
if a Subject line of a message contains Russian, then such Subject is being sent by Netscape in a MIME-encoded image (for example,
  Subject: =?koi8-r?Q?=F3=20=D5=D7=C1=D6=C5=CE=C9=C5=CD?=
instead of having 8-bit Cyrillic letters in the Subject.

Your message looks Ok in Composition window, or in Sent folder, but really the Subject is MIME-encoded and you can see it, for example, via the menu View/PageSource for a message in Sent folder.

MIME is a Mail standard, so most Mail programs will understand such Subject, decode it, and show a recipient of your e-mail a normal Cyrillic text in such incoming e-mail.

But News software that shows you Newsgroups, has no such standard (yet), so some programs may not be able to decode such Subject from MIME to regular Cyrillic and a user will see an unreadable set of characters such as
 Subject: =?koi8-r?Q?=F3=20=D5=D7=C1=D6=C5=CE=C9=C5=CD?=
(MIME Q-encoding)
or
 Subject: =?koi8-r?B?1MXT1MnL?=,.
(MIME Base-64 encoding)

For example, you may see such unreadable Subject lines in DejaNews while reading Cyrillic Newsgroups.

If you want to use Russian not only in the body of your message, but also in a Subject line, then, especially for the messages that you send to Newsgroups, you can tune-up Netscape and ask it to use a regular Cyrillic letters in a Subject, ask Netscape do not encode it.

We did such tune-up for a body of the message already - at the beginning of this Chapter you checked that in Edit/Preferences/Mail&Newsgroups/Messages an option "As is" is selected in the box "Send messages that use 8-bit characters",
but Netscape 4.5+ uses this setting only for the body of your message, not for a Subject line.

Here are the steps to make Subject lines of the messages you send have a regular Cyrillic text without any encoding:


  
Netscape 4.5+ - Error while working with KOI8-R form

There is a small error when a KOI8-R page contains a form and this form contains a menu(pull-down selection list)
(you can check it using my KOI8-R test page - see 'Chapter 5' "How to read in Russian - problems and tests"):


Next section - about problems in Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08).
If you are not using this version of Netscape, then you can skip next section and go to the 'Chapter 5' "How to read in Russian - problems and tests"
or go back to the Table of Contents.

   
Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08) - problems and solutions


 
Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08) - Composition window error
  and a small error in the News(Discussions) window.

You go to the Composition window when you want to write an e-mail or a message to a Newsgroup(Discussion Group).
For writing an e-mail, you can either go to the Messenger via the menu (under the 'Communicator' item of main menu) and then click on "New Msg" (this is preferred - less problems) or just call a Composition window directly by pressing Ctrl/M on your keyboard.

Netscape 4.0x works with an error in Composition window - it sends your message in a wrong encoding thus making it unreadable for a recipient.
There is no such error in newer Netscape 4.5+ versions.

As I heard, there is also no such error even in ver. 4.0x of Netscape - under the most recent version of Windows 95, but the solution that I offer is so simple, that it would not hurt to perform it for Netscape 4.0x under any version of MS Windows.

Netscape sends your Cyrillic text in a wrong encoding, creating a non-readable message, and the cure for this problem is:

Really, this error is not always present. For example, there is no such problem when you work under Windows 3.1 and click on an author's e-mail given on a CP-1251(win) page.
But nowadays many Web pages tell Netscape themselves what their Cyrillic encoding is (via HTML tag <META... Charset=...>), and Netscape itself changes an encoding accordingly, for example, to KOI8-R. So, a novice who wants to send an e-mail to an author of a page, will not be aware that the encoding has been changed, and will send his/her letter in a wrong encoding.
Therefore, the simplest way is to ALWAYS do this temporary switch decribed above while working with Netscape 4.0x.

Same method can be used to solve a small problem in the News(Discussions) window of Netscape 4.0x. When you open a Newsgroup in this window, a Subject of a currently selected article is shown in a special line in the middle of the screen (this line separates a list of articles and a text of a current article).
In some versions of MS Windows, a Russian subject shown in this special line, is unreadable.
To make the subject shown in this line readable, you need to use the method decribed above - temporarily select any encoding other than Cyrillic(Windows-1251), and then select Cyrillic(Windows-1251).


    
Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08) - problem with writing in Forms.
Netscape and different modifications of MS Windows.

There is a problem for writing in Forms using Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08) under some versions of MS Windows - you can not see what you write.
There is no such error in newer Netscape 4.5+ versions.

Below you will find the problem's details and solutions.

Unfortunately, different versions of MS operating systems work differently with Cyrillic, therefore Netscape (and other applications, for example, MS Word) may work nicely under one version of Windows 95, and have problems with Cyrillic under another version, for example, Windows 95 OSR2 - 4.00.950 B. (You can see modification number by using a 'System' icon in Control Panel)

It is known, for example, that Windows NT Service Packs 2,3 and Windows 95 OSR2 have some errors in their multilanguage support, even in Microsoft's own applications such as MS Word and Excel. See Newsgroups relcom.comp.os.windows and relcom.comp.os.windows.nt.

Netscape 4.0x, where you can normally write in Russian in Forms under

has problems under some versions of MS Windows: In these modifications of MS Windows, you can not see what you type - Netscape 4.0x does not display your Russian letters in the Forms's input fields (even though your text is Okay and the filled out Form will be sent correctly).

But friends, we used, for example, same installation file of Netscape 4 - cp32e407.exe - under both U.S. and Russian modifications of the same Windows 95!
So, blame it to Microsoft, whose various 'flavors' of the same operating system, for example, Windows 95, behave differently :(.
Let's imagine that I am inserting same coin into 10 public phones made by the same manufacturer, and in 3 of them the coin can not go through.
My opinion is that it's not a fault of the 'coin' (Netscape, same file cp32e407.exe), but the manufacturer's fault, because his various products of the same line (MS Windows) work differently.

So, if under your version of Windows, Netscape does not work with Russian as described in this article, then wait for a new version of your Windows operating system or for a new version of Netscape.

If you need to fill out some Cyrillic Form, but under your version of MS Windows you have the problem described above, you can try the following methods of fixing this problem.

If you do not have such problem, then skip the following section and go directly to the next 'Chapter 5' "How to read in Russian - problems and tests"
or go up to the Table of Contents

Here are the methods for fixning this problem of Netscape 4.0x under Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 3, and probably they will work under your version of Windows, too:


 
Method for users in Russia and those who 'Russified' Windows NT 4.0

Users in the former USSR and all those who 'Russified' their Windows NT by choosing 'region=Russian' via
    Start / Settings / Control Panel / Regional Settings
    Russian - Set as system default locale
.

can implement a very simple method that will allow them normally write in Forms using Netscape 4.0x (found by D.Filatkin):
In the 'Russified' Windows NT, Netscape 4 offers more fonts for the Cyrillic Encoding than it does in the regular NT.
In particular, it offers a font "Courier" which has Russian letters in it in this 'Russified' Windows NT.
You need to select this font as a Fixed width font, instead of the usually selected font "Courier New":

Now you can normally write in Forms using Netscape 4.
And you can keep using this "Courier" font - according to my tests everything works Okay with it - Cyrillic reading, Mail, News(Discussions), etc.


Next section explains how a user of a non-Russified Windows can solve the problem with writing in Forms using Netscape 4.0x.
If it's not your case, you can skip it and go directly to the next 'Chapter 5' "How to read in Russian - problems and tests"
or go up to the Table of Contents

 
Method for users who did not 'Russify' their Windows NT.

In such case the solution that allows normal writing in Forms using Netscape 4.0x, is not so simple.
Netscape 4 uses for writing in Forms a Fixed width font selected for the encoding Cyrillic, and somehow this font - "Courier New" - does not work properly - you do not see what you type, your input is displayed as a non-Russian text.
The solution is to use another Cyrillic Fixed font - free non-Microsoft font "ER Kurier 1251" described in the 'Chapter 1' of this article.
Forms problem can be solved by modifying this font and then selecting it in Netscape 4.

There is a free program TTFConv that modifies such 'old' non-Microsoft fonts by putting a Unicode indicator into a font and thus Windows NT and Netscape begin to work with these fonts better.
(Even Word 97 begins to recognize such non-Microsoft fonts)

You need to download this very small program from here: ftp://ftp.lesobank.ru/pub/soft/Soft_win32/TTF_convert/
  or take a copy I have:
ttfconv.zip

Place this ttfconv.zip archive file into the directory where you put the fonts while reading 'Chapter 1' - C:\RUSFONTS.
(Downloading of a .ZIP file was explained in the Chapter 1 above)

Then you need to extract the files of TTFConv from this archive.
(Opening a .ZIP archive was explained in the Chapter 1 above)

Now you can modify the font file:

  1. Close Netscape
  2. Delete this Russian font's registration record
    (if you installed non-Microsoft fonts of 'Chapter 1') from Windows NT:

  3. Run ttfconv.EXE program against this Russian font file placed during the reading of 'Chapter 1' into the folder C:\RUSFONTS:

  4. Register this font (already modified) again in Windows NT:



Now you need to tell Netscape that you want to use font "ER Kurier 1251" as a Cyrillic Fixed width font
(Netscape 4 uses a Fixed font for writing in Forms):

From now on you will be able to see what you are writing in a Form's input fields while using Netscape 4.

To the Table of Contents


             

5. How to read Cyrillic in Netscape 2,3,4. Problems and tests



NOTE. In the browser window you can NOT see readable Russian in a Title of a page (top blue line) if you have non-Russian MS Windows:
non-Russian Windows 95/98 or Windows NT 4.0/2000 where Russian was not selected as 'Region' in Control Panel.
It's because Netscape uses a system font to show this Title line.



Correct encoding, but page is not readable. Why ?

If some Russian language server does not specify which encoding (Character Set) it uses, then try to use both CP-1251 and KOI8-R settings, one after another, until you see normal Russian text.
My Test Pages are of this type - you need manually switch to a needed Cyrillic encoding via your browser's menu.
It's because my audience includes users of older browsers (for example, Netscape 2) that do not understand such specification.

If you still can not read this page, then it may be one of the following situations:



So, test your tune-up for reading now:

  
Test: you read Russian in Netscape

You can check how your KOI8-R and CP-1251 settings work for reading of Web pages; for reading texts in forms (their buttons and menus), offered on some Web pages; for reading Russian entries in your Bookmarks; and for reading articles in News(Discussions).
(About writing - in the next Chapter 6).

Reminder - how to select a needed Cyrillic encoding:

So, for testing the settings you made to read in Russian, you can use:

  1. Web pages.
    Two Russian Test pages that I prepared - in KOI8-R and CP-1251(win) encoding.
    These Test pages allow you to check both Proportional and Fixed fonts.

    My Test pages let you also check Forms - they are at the bottom of each test page.
    In Netscape 2,3,4 you can read a text on a form's button and in a form's pop-up menu(list box), if a form has such element.

    Note. Fixable errors while reading Cyrillic on a KOI8-R form:



    By selecting a corresponding encoding, check if you can read Russian on a page and in a page's form:

    Russian Test Pages (include alphabet)
    in the U.S. in Russia
    KOI8-R fonts Test page KOI8-R fonts Test page
    CP-1251(win) fonts Test page CP-1251(win) fonts Test page


  2. News(Discussions).
    Remember, Russian language Newsgroups use KOI8-R encoding.
    Read Cyrillic articles in the relcom.talk Newsgroup.
    You can read both Subject lines and messages themselves:

  3. Bookmarks.

To the Table of Contents


  Incorrectly designed pages - not readable at all

Sometimes you just can not read a Russian page, in spite of the fact that you have setup Netscape correctly.
Such page is NOT readable at all on your PC with any browser - MS Internet Explorer, Netscape, WebSurfer, etc.

It means that you found a page where the author did some wrong things during development - explicitly named font and/or font size to be used for the reading of Russian text.
But in your system, for example, Windows 3.1, there is no Russian letters in the font with the specified name (you have Russian letters in another font) and you will see only gibberish symbols on such page.

We are talking about the "FONT" element of the HTML language.
If you take a look at the HTML text of such page, selecting from the menu
View / Document Source,
then you will see, for example, the following line before a Russian text:

  FONT FACE=Arial   or   FONT FACE=Arial Size=1
Usage of the elements FACE= and SIZE= is considered a bad HTML style.
If your are interested in the details and would like to know what categories of users will not be able to read Russian on such page, then read my short summary of this issue (it's a separate page): "Incorrectly designed, unreadable Russian pages".

To the Table of Contents


   

6. How to write in Russian in Netscape 2,3,4

Netscape ver. 2,3, and 4 allows you to write in Russian.
But you will be able to do so in all parts of Netscape only if you read carefully my tune-up instructions in Chapter 3 or Chapter 4 (depending on your version of Netscape).

NOTE: I will refer to versions 2.01 and 2.02 as Netscape 2 in my text.


 
To write in Russian in Netscape, you need to do 2 things:
  1. Select needed encoding (CP-1251(win) or KOI8-R) via the following menu:
    Thus, you make work a specific set of Russian fonts, that was selected for this Encoding during the initial tune-up.
    (In the previous chapters I gave the instructions of how to install these Russian fonts and how to select an encoding for a Russian page).

  2. Switch your keyboard to Russian mode.
    So, a keyboard program need to be used to let you type in Russian, that is, let you switch to a Russian keyboard layout.

    Such keyboard programs tools are the subject of this Chapter.

So, let's begin:

Keyboard Programs

There are several commercial(CyrWin,ParaWin) and free(WinKey) keyboard programs for Windows, and also several methods of using keyboard tools included into Windows 95/98/NT/2000 (NLS - Native Language Support tools).

Such programs and tools are often called Keyboard Switchers.
They allow you to activate a Russian keyboard layout.

NOTE. I do not have commercial keyboard programs, and don't know if they are good or not, but here are some links for you if you decide to buy one:

I want to remind you again, that Microsoft uses CP-1251(Windows) encoding for Russian, so it is usually easy to initiate CP-1251 keyboard tools in Windows 95/98, Windows NT/2000, or in Russian version of Windows 3.x(made for the former USSR).
In the regular Windows 3.x there are no Native Language Support tools, so it takes equal efforts to install KOI8-R and CP-1251 keyboard tools there.

Important!
Sometimes I receive letters from new users with questions like this, "You suggested to use a KOI8-R font 'ER Bukinist', but in this font Russian letters are located on unusual keyboard buttons, not those that standard Windows CP-1251 layout uses".
The point is that neither fonts, nor Netscape have control over a keyboard layout. Fonts contain just images of the letters.
The placement of the letters on the keyboard - a layout - is driven by keyboard tools that you use.
For example, a KOI8-R keyboard layout offered in this chapter is exactly the same as standard Windows Russian layout for CP-1251.

Below you find some information about Cyrillic writing that will help you to produce CP-1251 or KOI8-R text.
This article is about Netscape and not about Russification of Windows. Therefore, in this chapter I explain keyboard stuff necessary to write in Russian in Netscape, and it will let you also write in Russian in almost every other Windows application, but not everywhere in Windows.
(For example, I can not explain how to write in MS-DOS window, or how to Russify Windows completely to let you write in, say, Windows 95 Notepad editor. See 'Chapter 8' for the Windows Russification links)

Click on a line that corresponds to your version of Windows:


 

Russian keyboard in Windows 95/98/NT/2000

Windows 95/98 Note.
If you are not using Russian or PanEuropean version of Windows 95/98, where the file of Russian keyboard layout is present initially, then before going any further you will need to install an additional software - "MS Multilanguage Support" package, provided free by Microsoft.
Here is my short installation instruction for this package:

in the U.S. "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"
in Russia "Cyrillic and MS Multilanguage Support"

Windows NT Note.
I have only NT 4.0 and never saw NT 3.51. You can read about both NT 4.0 and NT 3.51 in the official document of the Russian NT Users Group (in Russian, CP-1251): "NT: Frequently Asked Questions".


Note. MS Windows uses CP-1251 encoding for Russian, so when you see 'Russian' in Control Panel, it means 'Russian CP-1251'.

Here are the instructions for writing in Russian in Netscape under Windows 95/98/NT/2000:

 
1. Keyboard and Russian CP-1251(win) encoding

To produce Russian CP-1251(win) text in Netscape, you need to do 2 things:

Below are the steps to initiate Windows' built-in Russian keyboard layout for CP-1251(win).

Windows 95/98 users probably did it already while reading my instructions for "MS Multilanguage Support" package for Windows 95/98.
That is, they have activated Cyrillic keyboard layout and, in case of Russian, have now a 'RU' indicator on the Taskbar.
If not, they should read the same instructions below.
Windows NT 4.0 does not require an installation of "MS Multilanguage Support" because it's already active in it, but users of NT 4.0 still need to follow the keyboard activation instructions below.

Important note for Windows 2000 only.
Before going any further you must activate (if you did not do it already) Cyrillic support in your Windows 2000:
  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the globe-like icon called "Regional Options"
  3. In the "Regional Options" window, in its tab "General", see a second 'frame' called "Language Settings for the system"
  4. See if you have a box "Cyrillic" checked.
    If not, then click on this box to activate Cyrillic support and then click on the button "Apply" below at the right.
    You will be asked to insert Windows 2000 CD-ROM and then necessary files will be copied from there.



Installation of a standard Russian CP-1251 keyboard layout:

  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Click on ADD
  5. Find "Russian" in the list and then click on OK.
  6. You are back to the "Languages" window
    ("Input Locales" window under Windows NT 4.0/2000), and layout "Russian" is below the layout "English".
    Make sure that you have option "Enable Indicator on Taskbar" checked (it's at the bottom of this window).
    It will allow you to see an indicator - EN/RU - at the right end of the Taskbar.
    As it is written in this window, you will use a combination of buttons LeftAlt+RightShift to switch between Russian and English.
    Click on OK.
  7. Windows begins an installation of this keyboard layout using its CD-ROM or directory(folder) where you have Windows installation files.
    It will install Russian (CP-1251 encoding) keyboard file kbdru.

This keyboard layout is a standard layout of Russian letters on the keyboard used in the former USSR.

NOTE. If you don't have Russian letters written on the buttons of your keyboard, then you may want to install, instead of this standard layout, my 'phonetic' CP-1251 keyboard layout:
on your keyboard Russian letters will be on the places where similar English are, for example, English 'O' - Russian 'O', 'A'-'A', etc.
If you need such thing, you can download it from my Home Page: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PaulGor/.
See there a section called "Phonetic keyboard". The section has a picture of this layout and installation instructions.

Now you can write in CP-1251 Russian encoding using a language indicator 'RU'.
You can check it immediately - in WordPad editor (Start/Programs/Accessories).
Just select a CP-1251 font (fonts were explained in the Chapter 1), for example, "Arial (Cyrillic)", then switch the keyboard to 'RU' and start typing!
(Really, Wordpad itself will switch your keyboard to 'RU', but in most other Windows appications you will need to do it yourself).

If in the future you don't need to write in Russian CP-1251 anymore, you can easily remove this 'RU' keyboard indicator from your Tasbar:

  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Select a line that says "Russian" and click on REMOVE
  5. Click on OK and the indicator will disappear immediately.
And if you need it again later, you can easily add this keyboard layout using the same method:
  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Click on ADD (no Windows re-boot required)


I want to remind you that Netscape 4 has some problems with Russian writing in Mail and Forms under some versions of Windows. See Chapter 4, section "Problems with Cyrillic in Netscape 4".


 
2. Keyboard and Russian KOI8-R encoding

In Netscape ver. 2 and 3 you must have an ability to write in KOI8-R - in Mail, News, and also in forms, offered on some KOI8-R Web pages. All this was explained above, in Chapter 3.

Netscape 4 works differently, it does not require any KOI8-R font or KOI8-R keyboard switcher (see Chapter 4 above).
Remember, in Netscape 4, when you want to write an e-mail(Messenger) or write to a Newsgroup(Discussions), you need to select Windows-1251 encoding via View/CharacterSet (View/Encoding   in ver. 4.0x).
Netscape 4 will - 'behind the scenes' - translate your input from the local encoding (CP-1251) to KOI8-R encoding used on the Internet, and normal KOI8-R text will go to the Internet.

So, you will need KOI8-R keyboard tools in Windows only for the older versions of Netscape - ver. 2 and 3.
Therefore, if you use Netscape 4, then you can skip the rest of this section and go immediately to the section "Test: You write in Russian in Netscape".

To the Table of Contents


KOI8-R keyboard: Netscape 2,3 under Windows 95/98/NT/2000

In these versions of Netscape you need to do the following 2 things to produce Russian KOI8-R text:

In Windows, keyboard layout "Russian" is already taken for the CP-1251 encoding. So, you need to install KOI8-R keyboard support instead of some other language that you are not going to use.
I offer 2 choices to avoid a problem if a user needs a language which I selected to replace:

I use Icelandic-IS in the instruction below, but you can do the same for Portuguese(Brazilian)-PO if you wish.

The following instruction will help you to install KOI8-R keyboard layout as 'IS' ("Icelandic").
After you done with it, you will have 3 keyboard layouts:

'EN', 'RU'(that is, CP-1251), and 'IS'(will be KOI8-R)

and you will be able to switch between them normally - using the LeftAlt+RightShift keyboard combination or by clicking with a mouse on the language indicator ('EN'/'RU'/'IS') located at the right end of your Taskbar.


How to have a KOI8-R keyboard layout as 'IS' on Taskbar

I developed my KOI8-R keyboard files in such a way, that the location of Russian letters in the KOI8-R mode ('IS') will be exactly the same that you have for Windows' standard built-in CP-1251 layout called "Russian" ('RU').
That is, when you switch to 'IS', Russian letters and other symbols can be found on the same places of your keyboard where they are in the 'RU' mode of your keyboard. This makes an input of a KOI8-R text easier with a standard Russian keyboard used in the former USSR.

NOTE. If you don't have Russian letters written on the buttons of your keyboard, then you may want, instead of the standard layout, install my 'phonetic' KOI8-R keyboard layout:
on your keyboard Russian letters will be where similar English are, for example, English 'R' - Russian 'P', 'A'-'A', etc.
If you need such thing, you can download it from my Home Page: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PaulGor/.
See there a section called "Phonetic keyboard". The section has a picture of this layout and installation instructions.
The layout is exactly the same as my CP-1251 phonetic layout mentioned in the previous section.

To create keyboard layout files for Windows 95/98, I utilized an easy-to-use shareware program "Janko's Keyboard Generator".

Let's start the installation of my KOI8-R standard Russian keyboard layout.
First, you need to create a directory(folder) where you will keep my KOI8-R keyboard files for Windows 95/98/NT/2000, for example, C:\RUS-KBD.
Now you need to download into this folder my small file(archive) that contains KOI8-R layout files. Click on the underlined file name in the table below.
(See downloading instructions above, in "Chapter 1").

For Windows 95/98:

in the U.S. in Russia
file KBD95KOI.zip file KBD95KOI.zip

For Windows NT 4.0/2000:

in the U.S. in Russia
file KBDNTKOI.zip file KBDNTKOI.zip

After you download the archive file into C:\RUS-KBD folder, you will need to extract files from this archive.
(See .ZIP files instructions above, in "Chapter 1").
As a result, my KOI8-R keyboard files will appear in this folder.


To have KOI8-R keyboard layout as 'IS', we need to install first a Windows' own "Icelandic" keyboard layout, and only then replace it with Russian KOI8-R layout (same should be done for "Portuguese(Brazilian)" if you choose it):

  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Click on ADD
  5. Find "Icelandic" in the list and then click on OK.
  6. You are back to the "Languages" window ("Input Locales" window under Windows NT 4.0), and layout "Icelandic" is below the layout "English".
    Click on OK.
  7. Windows begins an installation of this layout - file kbdic - using its CD-ROM (or directory where you have Windows installation files).
    If you don't have full Windows installation package, you can type C:\RUS-KBD when Windows asks you for an alternate location, and file kbdic will be taken from there.
  8. Installation is over, and now you will be able to switch between 'EN', 'RU', and 'IS' as usual - using the LeftAlt+RightShift keyboard combination or with a mouse click on the language indicator located at the right end of your Taskbar.

We can replace now this Icelandic keyboard layout with Russian KOI8-R one.
Using Windows Explorer, open folder C:\RUS-KBD and do the following:

  1. Copy my KOI8-R layout file - kbdkoi8 - to the System (for NT/2000 - System32) sub-directory(folder) of your Windows folder.

  2. Go back to the C:\RUS-KBD folder and double-click on the file koi8-is.reg (if you preferred Portuguese then click on koi8-po.reg).
    You should get a message that the layout was successfuly installed in the Registry.

  3. Shut Down your Windows (Logoff) and then go in again (Login) to make the Registry changes be in effect

Now you can write in KOI8-R Russian encoding using a language indicator 'IS'.
You can check it immediately - in WordPad editor (Start/Programs/Accessories).
Just select a KOI8-R font described above, in Chapter 1 - "ER Bukinist KOI-8", then switch the keyboard to 'IS' and start typing!

Do not forget that in Netscape 2,3 you need to select first the corresponding Encoding via Options/DocumentEncoding (that will activate KOI8-R fonts), and only then begin to input KOI8-R text in the 'IS' mode of the keyboard:

If in the future you don't need to write in KOI8-R anymore, you can easily remove this 'IS' keyboard indicator from your Tasbar:

  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Select a line that says "Icelandic" and click on REMOVE
  5. Click on OK and the indicator will disappear immediately.
And if you need it again later, you can easily add this keyboard layout using the same method:
  1. Start / Settings / Control Panel
  2. In the CONTROL PANEL window - double-click on the icon KEYBOARD
  3. In the KEYBOARD window, select a tab "Languages"
    (in Windows NT 4.0/2000 - a tab "Input Locales")
  4. Click on ADD (no Windows re-boot required)

Moreover, when you do so, you'll get again my KOI8-R layout as 'Icelandic', so you will not need to repeat the installation (it's because we registered KOI8-R as "Icelandic" and Registry was not changed since then).



NOTE. You may find it annoying to use 3 keyboard layouts - EN/RU/IS - on your Taskbar.
For example, you are in the 'RU' (CP-1251) mode busy typing and want to type something in English, too. So, you pressed LeftAlt+RightShift to continue typing in English ('EN' mode), then you looked at your screen - oops, garbage! Your language indicator is showing 'IS' instead of expected 'EN'! You should've done LeftAlt+RightShift twice to switch from 'RU' to 'EN' passing on the way 'IS'.
So, if you do not use often one of the encodings, say, KOI8-R, you can avoid installation of this 3rd layout 'IS' (or remove it if you tried 3 layouts and didn't like it) and input the text of this second Russian encoding using one of the following methods:



You can skip the following section devoted to the keyboard tools under Windows 3.x and go immediately to the section "Test: You write in Russian in Netscape".

To the Table of Contents


     

Windows 3.1, 3.11. Keyboard program WinKey.

I did not see Russian Windows 3.1, made by Microsoft for the former USSR, but in the regular Windows 3.1, 3.11 there are no built-in keyboard support for Russian language.
So, I use a free keyboard program(keyboard switcher) WinKey.
You can use WinKey in any application that allows fonts selection(to be able to select Russian fonts), and therefore in Netscape also.
(Reminder: you can write in Russian only in versions 2.01, 2.02, 3, and 4 of Netscape.)

You can download WinKey package to your PC (as an archive file winkey.zip) by clicking with your mouse on an underlined file name in the following table.
You need to place this file into some empty directory(folder).
(See instructions for downloading files from the Web above, in "Chapter 1").

WinKey - Keyboard Switcher
in the U.S. in Russia
file winkey.zip file winkey.zip
at SovInformBureau server at Relcom server

After you download this archive file into some empty directory on your PC, you need to extract files of the WinKey package from this archive.
(See instructions for processing of .ZIP files above, in "Chapter 1").
As a result, WinKey installation files will appear in this directory.

WinKey installation under Windows 3.x/95

1. Run file(program) INSTALL.EXE that is located in the directory where WinKey's files are (for example, by double-click on INSTALL.EXE).

WinKey will install itself into the directory(folder) C:\WINKEY. So, after installation is over, you can erase those installation files you have in the temporary directory where you have downloaded winkey.zip.



2. How to make WinKey calls handy in the future:



How to use WinKey under Windows 3.x/95

Call WinKey. Now, until you close it, you will have an active WinKey icon - it looks like a national flag.
If you don't see it at the moment(it is behind some other window), just press Scroll Lock button, and you will see it immediately.

To close WinKey application, click once on this active icon - 'flag'
(in Windows 95 - with right button of your mouse) and select CLOSE.

You probably should read WinKey HELP - just double-click on this active icon-'flag'.

But generally, WinKey works in the following way. It allows you to type both in CP-1251(Win), and in KOI8-R.
WinKey uses a Scroll Lock button to switch a keyboard from English to Russian and back.
Scroll Lock switches your keyboard from Default Keyboard to Alternative Keyboard, where Default Keyboard - English, and Alternative you choose by yourself, for example, KOI8-R.

How to choose your current Alternative Keyboard:

  1. Click once on this active icon-'flag'
    (in Windows 95 - with right button of your mouse)
  2. Select in the menu Alternate Keyboard
  3. Select needed encoding - it will be marked by WinKey

Now Scroll Lock will switch your keyboard from English to whatever Russian encoding you have selected, for example, KOI8-R.

WinKey comes with its own keyboard layout files - .wkb - for several Russian encodings.
You can see a picture of a layout to find out which keyboard buttons are assigned to the letters and other symbols in a Russian layout:

  1. Click once on this active icon-'flag'
    (in Windows 95 - with right button of your mouse)
  2. Select in the menu "Keyboard Configure"
  3. Click on the LOAD button and select a file, for example, ruskoi8.wkb
  4. You will see a picture of the keyboard. If you click on this keyboard's SHIFT button, you will see an uppercase locations
  5. Click on EXIT

WinKey allows a user - via menu Keyboard Configure - make custom keyboard layouts.

For users who do not have Russian letters drawn on the buttons of their keyboard, I made a 'phonetic' layout for KOI8-R and for CP-1251.
That is, Russian letters will be where similar English are, for example, English 'R' and Russian 'P', 'A'-'A', etc.
If you need such thing, you can download my 'phonetic' layouts for your WinKey - see section "Phonetic keyboard" of my Home Page: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PaulGor/.

I also created for WinKey 2 more layouts - CP-1251(win) and KOI8-R - that correspond to a MS standard Russian keyboard used in the former USSR.
That is, Russian letters are located on the same places as in Windows 95 or NT where Microsoft offers a keyboard support for Russian:

You can download these 2 standard Russian keyboard layouts (they are inside an archive file kbd31.zip) by clicking with your mouse on an underlined file name in the following table.
You need to place this file into some empty directory(folder).
(See instructions for downloading files from the Web above, in "Chapter 1").

in the U.S. in Russia
file KBD31.zip file KBD31.zip

After you download this archive file into some empty directory on your PC, you need to extract files from this archive.
(See instructions for processing of .ZIP files above, in "Chapter 1").
After extracting these files from KBD31.zip archive, you need to copy them into KEYBOARD sub-directory of C:\WINKEY directory.

To use my standard Russian Layouts in WinKey, do the following (as was explained above, WinKey switches a keyboard - using a Scroll Lock button - from English to an Alternate layout which will be one of Russian layouts here):  

  1. Open WinKey application
  2. Click once on WinKey icon (it has a Flag on it)

  3. Select Menu Configure option

  4. Click on available Alternate 4 button in the right column
  5. Input corresponding information for my KOI8-R Layout:
  6. Click on available Alternate 5 button in the right column
  7. Input corresponding information for my CP-1251 Layout:
  8. Click on Save button on the right
Next time you click once on WinKey icon (Flag), you will be able:
  1. Select Alternate Keyboard option
    and then
  2. Select Std KOI8-R or Std 1251
After this, you will be able to switch between English and selected Russian using handy WinKey's hot key - Scroll Lock button.

Important!
If you want to use one Russian layout most of the time, for example, use Scroll Lock to switch between English and my standard KOI8-R, then you should make it Item no. 1 in WinKey's Alternate Keyboard menu. Then you will not need to go to WinKey menu each time you call this program, because by default WinKey switches between English and "Alternate 1":

To the Table of Contents


       

Test: you write in Russian in Netscape

Check if my instruction allow you to write in ver. 2.01, 2.02, 3, and 4.

You will be able to check your KOI8-R and CP-1251 settings for writing in forms offered on some Web pages, in Mail(Messenger), and in News(Discussions).

The methods of switching your keyboard to Russian were described in the previous sections of this chapter, and encodings, remember, can be selected in the following way:

So, to check your setup for writing, you can use the following.

  1. Forms.
    Select a corresponding encoding and try to write:

    Note. Netscape 4.
    As it was mentioned in the previous sections of this chapter, Netscape 4 does not need any KOI8-R keyboard tools - you are writing using 'native' MS keyboard layout for Russian - CP-1251, and Netscape 4 itself translates your input into KOI8-R if you are writing into KOI8-R form.
    Attention! Remember, Netscape 4.0x (4.0 - 4.08) has fixable problems with forms (Netscape 4.5+ works Ok) under some versions of Windows. See Chapter 4, section "Netscape 4.0x and writing in Forms".



  2. Netscape Mail (Messenger).
    Remember, KOI8-R is an encoding for Russian on the Internet, including e-mail.

    Send an e-mail letter to someone whose e-mail system (for example, Netscape Mail), can receive Cyrillic correctly (you can send e-mail to yourself if your receiving e-mail system works normally with Cyrillic).

    You can write both a Subject line and a letter itself:

    Netscape 4 note.
    Netscape 4 has a fixable error in the Composition window, where you type your letter, and the solutions are described in 'Chapter 4', section "Problems with Cyrillic in Netscape 4").


  3. News(Discussions).
    Remember, Russian language Internet Newsgroups use KOI8-R encoding.

    Try to write a message to relcom.test Newsgroup (or to some other test-oriented Newsgroup, for example, snews://secnews.netscape.com/netscape.test or news://msnews.microsoft.com/microsoft.test).

    You can write both a Subject line and a message itself
    (relcom.test Newsgroup requires that you begin a Subject line with English words Test. Ignore.):

    You may go to this Newsgroup again in a minute or so to read your posting.

To the Table of Contents


   

Free text editor Transletterator

If you need to type in Russian only occasionally, then you can avoid installing Russian keyboard tools and use instead the Transletterator.
(For example, you need to type in KOI8-R Russian only in Netscape 2,3 (send e-mail) and rarely. Then you can avoid installing KOI8-R keyboard tools in your Windows.)

Transletterator is a free text editor, which does not require any keyboard program to type in Russian.
This editor works with any Windows platform - 3.x,95/98,NT/2000, but it works only with 'old', made for Windows 3.1 Russian fonts explained in Chapter 1 and does not work with new large fonts such as "Arial (Cyrillic)".

In the menu OPTIONS of this program you can see that
Ctrl/R lets you type in Russian, and Ctrl/E - in English.
You sure need to select a corresponding font to type in Russian:
OPTIONS / FONT (or Ctrl/F).

That is, you can type a KOI8-R text using this editor, and then just copy this text - Edit/Copy and Edit/Paste - to a Composition window of Netscape 2,3, where you need it to send an e-mail or a message to a Newsgroup. Same you can do to fill out some KOI8-R Form.

If you want to know about such method, then read further, otherwise click on Netscape's BACK button to return to the part of this article where you come from or go to the next "Chapter 7. Netscape and other applications".

To the Table of Contents


Installation of the Transletterator

  1. You need to create a directory(folder) for this package, for example, C:\RUSEDIT.

  2. Download the package (it's in .ZIP archive) from the author's page Tyson Graaff's Page at AOL
    or download my copy of this package: TRANSLTR.zip.

    into the directory you created
    (See downloading instructions above, in "Chapter 1").

  3. Extract files from archive.
    (See extracting instructions above, in "Chapter 1").

Transletterator requires one special free library file - VBRUN200.dll, that must be present in the directory(folder) Windows\System.
If you don't have such file, you can download it (as .ZIP) from here: VBRUN200.zip
and then extract VBRUN200.dll from this archive file and place this VBRUN200.dll file into your Windows\System directory(folder).

How to make Transletterator calls handy in the future

To have an icon of Transletterator in Windows, or to place a link to this editor into the START/PROGRAMS menu in Windows 95/98/NT/2000, you need to perform the same operations that were discussed in the section "How to make WinKey calls handy in the future".

Instead of working with some keyboard tools, Transletterator just uses a simple table that consists of 2 columns, where a button of your keyboard has a corresponding Russian letter in the next column.
That is, you may have several Tables (files .TBL) for different encodings and different layouts.

The current table is selected via the menu OPTIONS / TRANSLATION TABLE.

The author have included into the package one such table - koi8.TBL.
It's some kind of a 'phonetic' layout - Russian letters are where similar English are.

A table of this editor is a plain text file, so you can - in 10 minutes - make your own table with any layout - for KOI8-R or CP-1251 encoding, and place Russian letters at any desirable buttons of your keyboard.

Note. I made 2 new tables, and you can download them from my Home Page: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PaulGor/, from the section "Cyrillic text editor". I made:

But if you want to create another table, suitable for your needs, then you can use Russian alphabet from my Test pages - see above, in Chapter 5, section "Test: you reading Cyrillic in Netscape".

For example, you want to create your own KOI8-R table for Transletterator (that is, create your own KOI8-R keyboard layout):

  1. Go to my KOI8-R Test page (it has KOI8-R alphabet on it)
  2. Call an editor that comes with Windows -
    Write(Windows 3.x), or WordPad(Windows 95/98/NT/2000)
  3. In the editor, select a KOI8-R font (see Chapter 1):
  4. Type the rows of the table for all KOI8-R letters(both lowercase and uppercase). The format is the following:
    "Symbol of your keyboard","Russian letter"
    For example, for a 'phonetic' layout - "R","P".

    You can take a Russian letter from the Netscape's window where you have my KOI8-R Test page - by Edit/Copy and Edit/Paste.

  5. Save the file you created - as a plain text file (type - .TXT) -
    FILE / SAVE AS / my-koi8.tbl
  6. Call Transletterator and in the menu OPTIONS / TRANSLATION TABLE select your file - my-koi8.tbl

Same way you can type in CP-1251(Win) in Transletterator - just create another table using my CP-1251 Test page with the alphabet.

To the Table of Contents


   

7. Netscape and other applications

E-mail Notes

Using my method, you can send e-mail in Russian in Mail window of Netscape 2.01, 2.02, 3, and 4.

But Netscape 2 does not know about Cyrillic encodings.
So, when you write a KOI8-R e-mail letter, ver. 2 specifies wrong Charset for it, not KOI8-R.
This may confuse some e-mail programs that know about KOI8-R encoding.

Newer versions of Netscape already know about KOI8-R that is used to send Russian messages across the Internet, so they assign correct Charset - koi8-r.
Newer versions create correct Charset in the News window, too, when you prepare your message to a Newsgroup.

To see what Charset is assigned to your Russian letter, open Sent folder in Mail.
Then

Then click on your letter to open it and you will see assigned Charset in Content-Type field.


Using downloaded Russian texts

What to do when you found some Russian plain text file on Internet (for example some book as STRUG.TXT file), in some FTP directory ?
It is not very handy to read/print such text in Netscape. It is much better to use some Word Processor for it.

NOTE: Russian plain text files on the Internet may exist in different encodings -
KOI8-R, CP-1251, CP-866(Alt DOS).
You can convert such plain ASCII text file from one encoding to another, using a conversion program. See links to such programs in Chapter 8 of this article.

Warning: Even if you have some Windows True Type fonts of CP-866(Alt DOS) encoding (you may find such fonts on the Internet), you can NOT use them to read a CP-866 text file in MS Word - Russian letter 'a' is not shown there.
So, you need to convert such CP-866 text into KOI8-R or CP-1251 first.

Let's take Word for Windows as an example of a Word Processor for the found Russian text file. Same can be done in Write, WordPad, and other Windows word processors, that allow fonts selection, because the Cyrillic fonts discussed in this article are not some special fonts. They are normal True Type fonts for MS Windows.

Done!
Now I can print it, read it later, or send to friends.
My friends must have fonts of same family that downloaded text was (KOI8-R or CP-1251) to read my .DOC file in their Word.
If family - the same, but font is different, then they need to do the following:

  1. Load this .DOC file into their MS Word
  2. Select entire text - Ctrl-A
  3. Choose their Russian font of this family
  4. FILE / SAVE

To the Table of Contents


8. Links to other Russification instructions

I explained here how to use Russian in Netscape under Microsoft Windows.
And it's all I know in the area of 'Russification'. Therefore, if you want to know then use the links to other people's pages listed below and also a list of Newsgroups (Discussion groups) where you can find needed information or ask your question.

Here is the table with links regarding the subjects that I don't know about.
If you go to a page devoted to some program and don't find what you need, you can always ask an author of the page, for instance, by e-mail.
It is better than asking me about it: I don't have the information and the author does.

Instruction
Author
Word 97 - problems on screen/printers:
in the U.S.   in Russia
my collection

'Russify Everything'

"SovInformBureau", USA

Russian (localized) Netscape 4

RNUG, Russia

'Full Russification of Windows 95' (in CP-1251)
(or my copy of it - full95.htm)
 
RTW95, Russia

'Full Russification of Windows NT' (in CP-1251)

RWNTUG, Russia

'Cyrillic for UNIX, PC, and Mac'

"F&P", USA

Russian in Forte Agent 1.6
Russian in Forte Agent 1.5

K.Kazarnovsky, Russia
T.Kadyshev, Russia

'Russian in Eudora'

LvNet-Teleport, Latvia
'KOI8-R plug-in for Eudora' (in CP-1251) E.Surovegin, Russia

Convert: KOI8-R<->CP-1251<->...
Windows 95/98/NT/2000; Windows 3.1,3.11
Here is a copy in the U.S.
(see "Converters under Windows" in the menu there)
A.Lobastoff, Russia

Convert: KOI8-R<->CP-1251<->...
MS DOS; UNIX
For MS DOS, see my instructions for this program
K.Gredeskoul, Australia

'Cyrillic Converters'

D.Fedorov, Brazil

'Transliteration Converter'
(text as "privet" to real Russian)

R.Koshelev, Russia

Dictionary and Proofing Tools (Spelling, Grammar)

Informatic, Russia
Cyrillic Proofing Tools (Spelling, Grammar) Alki Software, USA

I don't use ICQ, but have some links for Cyrillic in ICQ:
  1. "ICQ and Russian"
    and its tune-up sub-page:
    "Russian font" (in CP-1251)
  2. "ICQ.ru"
  3. "Mirabilis: ICQ and Russian"
 

I don't use IRC, but have some links for Cyrillic in IRC:
  1. "Internet Relay Chat"
  2. IRC.PORTAL.RU
 

As I heard (I don't have AOL), AOL browser
does not work fully with Cyrillic.
But AOL allows to use another browser instead
and I have some links with the instructions:
  1. "Netscape & America Online"

  2. "Using America Online 3.0 and
    Netscape together"


 

'Russification of Macintosh'

M.Palchuk, USA
'MacOS and KOI8-R'
I.Moiseev, Russia

'Ukrainianization'

BRAMA, USA

If you did not find an answer for your Cyrillic question neither on my page, nor on the pages listed above, then see below a list of the following Russian-language Newsgroups (Discussion groups, Forums) where you can find an answer or ask your question.

  1. Free News server of Microsoft Corp.:

  2. Russian Newsgroups (Forums) Relcom.* and Fido7.*

 
Note. Some of Newsgroups may not be available on the News server of your Internet Service Provider. In such case you can use a free News service provided by DejaNews, where you can read a Newsgroup (Forum):
  1. Connect to DejaNews page: http://www.deja.com/home_ps.shtml

  2. in a line "Results Type" select 'Deja Classic'
    (otherwise you may not be able to see Russian in the list of subjects when DejaNews presents one for you)

  3. fill out fields "Forum", "Dates", etc. as desired



As I mentioned several times on this page, Russian language Newsgroups use KOI8-R encoding.
So, to read Newsgroup messages in DejaNews, you need to switch Netscape to Cyrillic(KOI8-R).
(Switching between different Cyrillic encodings for various Netscape versions was explained in this article)

NOTE. You will be able to read Russian subject lines in a list of found articles that DejaNews presents to you. But when you open a single message, you may not be able to read the subject line - it's a DejaNews error that I already reported to them. It's a minor problem, because you was able to read this subject line in a results list.



If the themes of the above Newsgroups are not related directly to your question, you may search Russian forums using DejaNews page:


That's all!
 
Paul Gorodyansky, Software Engineer, U.S.A.
(before 1991 - Pavel Gorodyanskiy, Moscow, Russian-French firm "InterQuadro")

My Home Page "Useful Cyrillic(Russian) stuff": http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PaulGor/.

If your want to ask me a question, then PLEASE, do not do it until you read a chapter "Links to other 'Russification' instructions" right above that may already contain the answer for it.
(I am spending a lot of time answering e-mails and do not want to end up as this person who closed his page, because people did not read his text but instead immediately asked him a question: "TechTalk. Closed.")

My e-mail address: paulgor@compuserve.com
(if you use Netscape 4.0x (4.0-4.08), then do not forget - before you begin writing me a letter - to read in Chapter 4 about a fixable error in the Composition window: "Problems with Cyrillic in Netscape 4.0x")

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Donations

These instructions are ThankYouWare.
It takes a lot of my resources to maintain this page - answering e-mail, looking for a new information on the Web, etc.
If you find my instructions useful, you may want to say "Thank you!" by sending some money to the following address:

"Russian Connection"
P.O. Box 328,
Los Altos, CA 94023-328
USA

Disclaimer
This article is a result of my personal research, not related to a company I work for.

The author does not and cannot warrant the information, documentation, or software included in this document or the performance or results obtained by using this information, documentation, or software.
This information, documentation, and software is provided "as is".
To the extent you use or implement this information, documentation, or software in your own setting, you do so at your own risk.


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