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IBus (Intelligent Input Bus) is an open source input framework for Linux and Unix.


USE flags

USE flags for app-i18n/ibus Intelligent Input Bus for Linux / Unix OS

X Add support for X11
emoji Enable support for Emoji
gconf Enable support for gnome-base/gconf
gtk Add support for x11-libs/gtk+ (The GIMP Toolkit)
gtk2 Enable support for x11-libs/gtk+:2
introspection Add support for GObject based introspection
kde Add support for software made by KDE, a free software community
nls Add Native Language Support (using gettext - GNU locale utilities)
python Add optional support/bindings for the Python language
test Enable dependencies and/or preparations necessary to run tests (usually controlled by FEATURES=test but can be toggled independently)
unicode Enable support for Unicode choice
vala Enable bindings for dev-lang/vala
wayland Enable dev-libs/wayland backend


Except for the basic IBus framework, one or more engines should be installed. For example:

root #emerge --ask app-i18n/ibus ibus-libpinyin


For IBus to work with Qt 5 / KDE 5 / Plasma, the ibus USE flag needs to be set on at least dev-qt/qtgui and kde-plasma/plasma-desktop:

FILE /etc/portage/package.use/ibus
dev-qt/qtgui ibus
kde-plasma/plasma-desktop ibus

And those packages rebuilt to reflect that change:

root #emerge --ask --oneshot --newuse dev-qt/qtgui kde-plasma/plasma-desktop


Have a look at the eix output for more available engines:

user $eix -c -S engine app-i18n/ibus

For graphical toolkit integration, app-i18n/ibus offers gtk (this refers to gtk+:2) and gtk3 flags.

The app-i18n/im-chooser package can helpful for selecting the preferred input method. As of now all im-chooser packages in the Portage tree are marked unstable.

If nothing starts (no ibus daemon) when a user logs in, put the following in the ~/.xprofile file:

FILE ~/.xprofile
export GTK_IM_MODULE=ibus
export XMODIFIERS=@im=ibus
export QT_IM_MODULE=ibus
ibus-daemon -drx

The installation can be finely tuned by running:

user $ibus-setup

ibus-setup can be used to set the preferred input methods, the system keyboard, or to add an icon in the taskbar.

You may also use the command-line ibus utility, if you can't or don't want to use ibus-setup:

user $ibus list-engine
user $ibus engine m17n:t:unicode # For example

To inform Qt ibus is now the input method, run:

user $qtconfig

See also