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I wanted my debian system to support not only english but also german. This is not supported by default, but can be done in 4 steps.

1. Edit /etc/locale.gen so it contains

  1. en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8
  2. de_DE.UTF-8 UTF-8

As you can see I added german as an additional language, but you can insert any language defined in /usr/share/i18n/locales.

2. run

  1. locale-gen

3. If you want to set a specific locale as default go to /home/USER/.bash_profile and insert

  1. LANG="de_DE.UTF-8"
  2. export LANG

Of course you have to replace “de_DE.UTF-8″ with your language.

4. Restart the machine.

After the reboot you will have different languages available at the Login interface or you stick to your default.