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Keyboard Manager For Linux (KMFL) is pre-installed in Balsa. You may install a Keyman keyboard file. This must be an “uncompiled” Keyman file with extension .kmn, not a compiled file with extension .kmx.


Your keyboard will only be available to select for use when your active application allows keystrokes to be entered. See details in Step 5 below.

To install the keyboard, have the .kmn file and its associated .bmp file in the same folder on a USB stick. Insert the USB stick. Open Application Menu — Settings — SCIM Input Method Setup.

Select the IMEngine — KMFL screen. Click the Install button and navigate to where your keyboard is stored. Select the keyboard and click Open. Repeat for any other keyboards you wish to install. To remove the pre-installed Bougainville Scripture keyboard, select it and click Delete.

Before you click the OK button at the bottom of SCIM Input Method Setup, check out the following settings:

  1. In the IMEngine — Global Setup screen, expand the Other entry by clicking on the little triangle to the left of Other. You will see a list of all the installed SCIM keyboards. You may enable/disable any of them with the checkboxes in the Enable column — useful if you might want a keyboard to become available later on, but want to hide it temporarily.

  2. In the FrontEnd — Global Setup screen, make sure the checkbox is marked next to Share the same input method among all applications.

  3. In the Panel — GTK screen, make sure that Misc-Show tray icon is checked. You may experiment with the other settings here.

  4. When you close the SCIM Setup window, it may instruct you to reload SCIM. Do this by right-clicking on the small keyboard icon on the lower panel (Taskbar) and selecting Reload Configuration.

  5. Test your new keyboard as follows. Open a program that allows you to type text into a window — i. e., OpenOffice Writer, Text Editor, WeSay, or a text entry window in another program. With a text entry window active, click on the small keyboard icon on the Panel. You should now be able to select your installed keyboard and enter characters.


When the active window does not allow you to enter text, clicking on the little keyboard icon will do nothing. You will not be able to change keyboards.

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