Input Method Editor or IME allows you to switch between different keyboard languages in Windows 11 and Windows 10. It is available on the Taskbar and denoted by the selected language. So if you are using English, you should ENG. Some users have reported that IME is disabled on their Windows computers. They cannot switch between the language – or there is a cross sign instead of the language name. If that’s the case with you, then in this post, we will show how you can fix the disabled Input Method Editor (IME) and allow you to switch between languages.
Input Method Editor (IME) is disabled in Windows 11/10
Input Method Editor is essential for those who work in different languages. Follow these methods to resolve the issue:
- Remove and add the Language again
- Copy language files from an old installation
- Check Input Indicator status
- Bypass WSUS for Domain Joined PC
- Un-Join Domain and Install the language.
Always make sure to type something when you switch the language. Sometimes the keyboards are close in terms of language, and it becomes difficult to figure out the difference. However, if you are limited to English input, with the IME stuck on the “A” icon or “ENG” icon, then follow these solutions.
1] Remove and add the Language again
If you are having a problem with a particular set of languages, then it’s best to remove them and add them back. Especially if this started happening after a feature update.
- Click on Settings > System > Time & Language > Language
- Select the language, and then click on Remove.
- Once it’s deleted from the system, add the language back.
- On the same screen, click on Add Preferred language.
- Search for the same language, and install it.
- Restart the computer once, and then press WIN + Spacebar to check if you can switch.
Make sure to repeatedly hit the spacebar so you can see the interface. It is built such that it lets any switch to the next language quickly.
We have seen a similar issue that was reported to use, and the solution was to set the Touch Keyboard and Handwriting Panel Service to manual.
2] Copy language files from an old installation
This has reportedly helped some, so you may try it. If you still have Windows.OLD folder or access to a previous version of Windows, then:
- Go to C:\Windows.OLD\IME\
- Copy language-specific DIC files from C:\Windows.OLD\IME\IMEJP.
- There should be three “.DIC” files – IMJPTK, IMJPZP, and SDDS0411.
- Paste it into the new installation folder at C:\Windows\IME\.
Once done, you will have to assign IMEJP to Administrator, and give Administrator full control over that folder and all of its child folders and files.
You can also choose to delete the language-specific folder. In the case of Japanese, it is IMEJP.
Read: Fix Microsoft Language IME high CPU usage
3] Check Input Indicator status
Check if the Input Indicator is turned on in Notification Area settings or not.
- Right-click on Taskbar > select Taskbar settings
- Scroll to find, and then click Turn System icons on or off.
- Select On from the drop-down menu for the input indicator.
- Click OK.
It is usually helpful when you are missing the indicator, and it creates confusion.
4] Bypass WSUS for Domain Joined PC
If you are using a computer which is Domain joined, it is recommended to bypass WSUS once.
Create a system restore point first and then open the Run prompt.
Type the following and hit Enter:
REG ADD "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU" /v UseWUServer /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
Restart Windows Update Service using the Services Manager.
Now, go to the Time and Language settings, and add the language again.
Next, open Registry Editor, and navigate to:
Delete the UseWUServer key or set the value to 1
5] Un-Join Domain and Install the language
On similar lines, you can also choose to un-join the Domain, temporarily. It will remove any policy restriction on the computer, and let you fix the issue. You will have to remove and add the language again.
If this doesn’t work, then you may need to follow a brutal method.
- Change language for all things including display to English US and reboot
- Remove all languages other than the one you need most.
- Install the second or the other language
- Reboot your computer.
The problem with the secondary languages isn’t new. We have seen hundreds of threads in Microsoft answers where people suffer when it comes to any other languages that need to coexist with English US. I hope Microsoft can fix this type of problem to make sure users can be productive, especially those using it for business.
How do I fix IME disabled?
To fix IME disabled error in Windows 11/10, you need to follow the aforementioned guides. For example, it would help if you remove and add the language again, copy language files from an old installation, check Input Indicator status, etc. However, if your computer is connected to a domain, it is recommended to remove and re-join it.
How do I enable Windows Input method?
To enable the Windows Input method, you can use the Windows Settings panel in Windows 11 and Windows 10 computers. You can go to Taskbar settings and click the Turn system icons on or off option. Here you can find a toggle button. You need to toggle the Input Indicator button to turn it on. After doing this, you can switch between various Input methods using the Taskbar button.
We hope these tips helped resolve the problem where you see Input Method Editor disabled on Windows 11/10.