Windows Vista Microsoft Locale Builder Tool

We're working on a tool, the Microsoft Locale Builder, for Windows Vista to help users create their own custom locales.  This will help those users that need a tool rather than a managed API to create a custom locale.

I'll post a link to the public beta when it becomes availalbe.  The beta will require Windows Vista since this is a Vista tool and custom locales work on Vista.  The .msi file in the Klingon example was created using this tool.

Click for fullsize screenshot

[Updated 10 Feb 2014] Locale Builder 2.0 designed for Windows 8.1 is available at

Old Beta version is available again at, please don't use that for Windows 8 or above, the locale format is slightly different.


Comments (17)

  1. Regular reader Ivan Petrov asked in the Suggestion Box:

    Hi Michael 😉

    Would you tell us something…

  2. Dasher says:

    Will the Locale that is created work only on the English version of Windows – or will it function on localised version of windows?

  3. Custom locales will be accessible from localized versions of Windows Vista.  They’re also available for Managed .Net Framework 2.0 applications.

  4. Dasher says:

    Ah ok – cool.

    Maybe you can answer a question for me: I’ve always wondered why there are localised version of Windows.  Why not just have english with the MUI language?

  5. In Vista we have a "language neutral" build and each language is just a MUI language on top of that.  There’re a lot of benefits from this approach.

    Historically its because we did localized versions before MUI and there needs to be incentive to make major changes like that.  I think its kind of how software development in general evolved with respect to localization.

  6. Dasher says:


    Thanks for the info.

    Does this mean that – with vista – if you buy an localised Italian build of Vista with a new machine – you’ll be able to switch (after installing an appropriate language pack) to another language?

    The reason I ask is that I often have to deal with the ex pat English community here in Italy.  They have bought a PC in Italy – and, while their Italian is good (they have been here for 10-30 years) they find it hard to use a PC in Italian.

  7. I know that we are aware of needs of expatriots and other users, however this raises packaging and marketing questions that I don’t know the answer to.

    I know that it will be possible to have machines with access to more than one localized language, but I don’t know how users will get additional languages.

  8. In the past, I have talked a lot about genitive month names.

    And I have talked a few times about custom…

  9. Scott R Thurgood says:


    I just want to build my own font in my own hand writting, but I can find how to do it.  I found a document on Technet with a download to myfont.exe, but the instructions say I need a Font Editor.  I cannot find one.

    How would you do it?

    Scott R Thurgood

  10. Building fonts is hard.  FontForge is an open source editor, but its hard to use and I can’t imagine it to make a handwriting font :(.  They have links to other tools that might work better.

  11. Night says:

    "Locale Builder" for Vista only. How can I create locale for XP and 2003 ? or where "Locale Builder" XP version ?

  12. Vista is the first version of windows to support custom locales, so there is no earlier version of the Locale builder.  Custom locales require Vista, Server 2008, Win7 or R2.

  13. Ghanavi says:

    How can we get a language ee-GH Eʋegbe(Ghana) included in microsoft languages or service packs? This ais a language use across three coutries in West Africa and has ISO approval already

  14. The locale builder only handles locales and not language packs.

  15. Danny John says:

    Please advise on where i can find a Locale builder for Windows 7. and the Locale builder beta version is no longer available in the link provided…

  16. The Vista version should be available again at…/LocaleBuilder.msi at least for a while.  Please don't use the Vista version for Windows 8 locales as they have some newer features.

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