Does Manjaro use ibus, fcitx, something else, or nothing?

In this post I’m not asking for help solving a specific issue, but rather I’m trying to understand and learn something; so please bear with me, or don’t, but just be warned about that.

Concise summary of the question: does Manjaro (by default, as freshly installed in the KDE edition) use iBus or fcitx as an input method for keyboards such as Spanish, or neither of those? And if it’s neither (as it looks to me) how is that possible, does it use some other input method framework, or is an input method framework not necessary for that? And if so how come Spanish keyboards don’t work in other distributions such as OpenSUSE unless you install one of those? What even is an input method?

Now the full story with context.

I’m new to Manjaro and previously I had been using OpenSUSE, both with KDE (and before that, years ago, Ubuntu with Gnome).

I don’t have a solid understanding of what an Input Method is: all I understand is somehow it has to do with, among other things, allowing you to type characters beyond those that can be typed by hitting a single key on a keyboard. For example, when you use a Spanish keyboard, and you hit the key ´ followed by a vowel (e.g. an “a”), you get an accented vowel (e.g. an “á”); and I seem to understand, in order for that to work, an Input Method is needed - or that’s what I thought. And similarly, I seem to understand Input Methods are needed in order to type language such as Chinese or Japanese, which have hundreds of characters, with special keyboards that don’t. But I’m not interested in Chinese or Japanese.

So, on OpenSUSE, iBus came installed out-of-the-box, and my Spanish keyboard worked as expected in all the applications I use. Until, after some system update, it stopped working in one particular application, namely PHPStorm, where it became impossible not only to use dead keys such as ` or ^ in combination with vowels to produce accented characters, but also to use them as individual characters, which happen to be vital in several programming languages.

Then I learned about the existence of fcitx, which as I understand it, is another input method, “alternative” to iBus. So I uninstalled iBus and installed fcitx (all of this still back in OpenSUSE) and that, for whatever reason, fixed the problem in PHPStorm (interistingly, for many users it goes exactly the other way around).

On that occasion I noticed that, after uninstalling iBus and before I installed fcitx, I was unable to use dead keys, not only in PHPStorm but in almost any application (with few exceptions, namely Google Chrome and I don’t remember if some more).

Then recently I got sick of OpenSUSE and all its bugs (unrelated to this) and switched to Manjaro.

In Manjaro, dead keys and composition work out of the box in all the applications I’ve tried so far, including PHPStorm.

However, neither the ibus nor the fcitx packages seem to be listed as installed.

So, how do all applications in Manjaro manage to support dead keys and composition with a Spanish keyboard while they are unable to do the same in OpenSUSE?

All language packages are not installed by default. That’s up to you to determine what you need. Some may be optional dependencies for packages you already have installed out of the box.

Sorry, the what? Please see How to Post

Sorry, the what? Please see How to Post

Oh ok, no internet slang, sorry, edited.

All language packages are not installed by default. That’s up to you to determine what you need. Some may be optional dependencies for packages you already have installed out of the box.

That’s interesting, thank you, but I don’t think it addresses any of my questions.

Thanks, appreciated. :+1:

It wasn’t meant to. :wink:

You’ve neither mentioned which DE or WM you were using on OpenSUSE nor which you’re using now on Manjaro, so it’s hard to answer which packages might be installed be default.

As far as our ISO profiles go, ibus is only installed by default on our GNOME edition. No fcitx packages are included in any profile. This does not include packages pulled in as dependencies by other packages, mind you.

Manjaro uses libinput.

Upon installation you are presented with a selection of keyboard layouts based on the locale (geoip location). Depending on the layout chosen, you get different handling of e.g. dead keys.

As already mentioned neither ibus nor fcitx is included on any ISO (Gnome not withstanding) as Manjaro HelloApplications offers optional installation of apps, printing support and complex input using either ibus or fcitx - it is my understanding it must be either - never both.


Sorry, which what? Just kidding.

I said I was using KDE on both, wouldn’t that be the DE? :thinking:

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