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Regional Configuration
Like most operating systems, CrOS supports user-selectable region
settings, including keyboard layouts, languages, and time zones. In
order to support an ideal out-of-box experience (OOBE), each device
must be shipped with regional configuration suitable for its intended
users. These settings are stored in the RO VPD (read-only vital
product data) in the ``initial_locale``, ``keyboard_layout``, and
``initial_timezone`` fields.
This document describes how regional configurations are managed in the
factory SDK.
.. contents::
.. _region-codes:
Regions and region codes
A **region** is a market in which shipped devices share a particular
configuration of keyboard layout, language, and time zone.
Each region is identified with a **region code** such as ``us``. A region
may be any of the following:
* A single country, such as the United States. The region code is the
two-letter `ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code
<>`_, e.g., ``us``.
Note that the alpha-2 code for the UK is ``gb``, not ``uk``.
* A non-country entity, such as Hong Kong, that has an ISO 3166-1
alpha-2 code assigned. The region code is the two-letter ISO 3166-1
alpha-2 code, e.g., ``hk``.
* A collection of countries or entities that share a regional
configuration, such as Hispanophone Latin American countries
(including Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, etc.) or Nordic
countries. The region code is a unique identifier (>3 characters to
avoid conflict with ISO alpha codes), e.g., ``latam-es-419`` or
* Part of a country or entity that has a specific regional
configuration, e.g., Francophone Canada. The region code is one of
the region codes described above, plus a period (``.``), plus an
identifier describing the variant. For example, Francophone
Canada's region code is ````.
Note that the concepts of regions and region codes, in the sense they
are used in this document, are specific to the factory SDK. There is
no single accepted worldwide standard for setting region
Currently, the region code is not directly used anywhere in CrOS; it
is solely an identifier used by the factory flow to identify the
shipping market for a device. However, in the future it may be used
in CrOS (e.g., to enable or disable functionality for certain markets
for regulatory reasons).
The :py:class:`cros.factory.l10n.regions.Region` [#l10n]_ class encapsulates a
single regional configuration.
.. _available-regions:
Available regions
Following is a table of known regions. Incomplete and unconfirmed
regions (not ready for use in shipping products) are italicized and
marked with question marks; if you need to use one of these please see
http://goto/vpdsettings for review.
For more information on how to choose field values, see
.. warning::
Concrete VPD values (keyboard, time zone, language, etc.) in this
table are provided for reference only; they are not intended to be
copied-and-pasted from this table into shop floor servers. Rather,
shop floor servers should provide only the region code for the
device, and the ``vpd`` test should be used to populate the concrete
VPD values based on values in the codebase. See
.. warning::
Launch plans for regions marked with asterisks, if any, may not be
publicly known. Take caution when sharing these values. These
regions are stored in the `private repository
<http://goto/private-regions>`_, and to use one of these you will
need to create a ```` in your board overlay.
.. regionslist::
How VPD values affect the CrOS user experience
See http://goto/vpdsettings.
.. _regions-values:
Selecting values for new regions
When adding a new region, you must choose the appropriate values
for each field. This section describes how to choose these values.
Note that two fields (``keyboards`` and ``language_codes``) are lists,
while the others are strings. When declaring regions with multiple
keyboards or language codes, make sure to use a Python list (e.g.,
``['en', 'fr']``) for those fields and not a comma-separated string (e.g.,
``'en,fr'``). The values are ultimately encoded as a comma-separated
string in the VPD, but in the regions database they are represented as
Python lists.
The exact set of values supported by CrOS, naturally, depends on the
CrOS image that will be installed. For instance, multiple keyboards
and language codes are supported only in M34+, and input methods other
than ``xkb:...`` are supported only in M38+. Always test your
region settings to make sure they work as you expect on the CrOS image
that will be used (see :ref:`regions-testing`).
Region code
See :ref:`region-codes` for information about region codes.
This field is stored in the VPD but is not currently used by CrOS.
.. _regions-keyboards:
Keyboard layouts (input methods)
The ``keyboards`` field (corresponding to the ``keyboard_layout`` VPD
setting) is a list of input method IDs. The first one is the
default. In general these should correspond to the languages chosen;
when a language is selected, only keyboards that represent a valid
choice for that language are shown.
Each identifier must start with either ``xkb:`` or ``m17n:`` or
``ime:``. As of M38, valid keyboard layout identifiers are:
- ``xkb:...``: XKB input methods listed in any file in JSON files in
the Chromium `src/chrome/browser/resources/chromeos/input_method
<>`_ directory. (Look for the ``id`` attributes
of each ``input_components`` list entry.) For example, you will
find ``xkb:us::eng`` in `google_xkb_manifest.json
- ``ime:...``: (M38+ only) Any hard-coded strings listed in
``kEngineIdMigrationMap`` in Chromium's `
<>`_. Currently this is:
- ``ime:zh-t:quick``
- ``ime:zh-t:pinyin`` (not yet supported as of this writing, but
should be added in M38)
- ``ime:ko:hangul``
- ``ime:ko:hangul_2set``
- ``m17n:...``: (M38+ only) Strings with a prefix in
``kEngineIdMigrationMap``. The prefix is rewritten according to
the map, and there must be a corresponding input method ID in some
file in the ``input_method`` directory. For instance, ``m17n:ar`` will
be rewritten to ``vkd_ar`` according to the map. ``vkd_ar`` is
present in ``google_input_tools_manifest.js``.
Since a Latin keyboard is required for login, the first entry in this
list should be a Latin layout corresponding to the first language in
the ``language_codes`` field. If that language has a non-Latin
keyboard, then ``xkb:us::eng`` should be used as the first entry.
See :ref:`where-regions-are-defined` for information on where to add
the new region to the codebase.
.. _regions-time-zone:
Time zone
The ``time_zone`` field (corresponding to the VPD ``initial_timezone``
field) specifies a single time zone that will be used as the default
timezone. M35+ supports automatic time zone detection based on
geolocation, but it is still worthwhile to choose a reasonable default
time zone default.
This must be a `tz database time zone
identifier (e.g., ``America/Los_Angeles``). See `
<>`_ for supported time zones.
There is no hard-and-fast rule for selecting the time zone, but as a
rule of thumb, you can choose the city representing the time zone in
the region with the largest population.
.. _region-factory-flow:
Language codes
The ``language_codes`` field (corresponding to the VPD
``initial_locale`` setting) is a list of language codes. See the
``kAcceptLanguageList`` array in ` <>`_
for supported languages.
Keyboard mechanical layout
This describes the shape of keys. It is used only to display an appropriate
keyboard onscreen during the keyboard test; it is not stored in the VPD
or used by Chrome OS. This may be one of:
- ``ANSI`` for ANSI (US-like) keyboard layouts with a horizontal Enter key.
- ``ISO`` for ISO (UK-like) keyboard layouts with a vertical Enter key.
- ``JIS`` for the JIS (Japan-specific) keyboard layout.
- ``ABNT2`` for the Brazilian ABNT2 keyboard layout, which is like the ISO
layout but has 12 keys between the shift keys (the ISO layout has 11).
This is simply a brief, human-readable name of the region (e.g.,
``Canada (French keyboard)``. It is used only in documentation.
This optional field may contain any notes necessary to describe the
region and any rationale for its settings. It is used only in documentation.
.. _regions-testing:
Testing region settings
When adding a new region, you should test your chosen values to make
sure that the values are valid, and the user experience in OOBE is as
you expect.
First, you should run unit tests making sure that your region settings
are valid. To test values in the public repo, use
``py/l10/``. To test values in a private or board
overlay, use :samp:`make overlay-{board} &&
overlay-{board}/py/l10/`, where :samp:`{board}` is
either the name of your board or the string ``private``.
To check the OOBE user experience, you can use the
``py/experimental/`` script. This script ssh'es into
a CrOS device, sets its VPD fields according to a region specified on
the command line, and runs the OOBE flow. The device should be running
a test image, and the factory toolkit should not be enabled.
Note that region configurations from your local client are used.
For example, to ssh into a device called ``crosdev`` and test a new
region named ``xx`` that you have added to the public overlay::
cd ~/trunk/src/platform/factory
py/experimental/ crosdev xx
Or if the region is in the private overlay::
cd ~/trunk/src/platform/factory
make overlay-private
overlay-private/py/experimental/ crosdev xx
How regions are set in the factory flow
In general, the test list should contain an invocation of the
``call_shopfloor`` test with the ``update_device_data`` action to
obtain the region code from the shop floor server, and set the
``region_code`` value in the device data dictionary. For instance::
args=lambda env: [
The ``vpd`` test can then be used to read the ``region_code`` entry
from the device data dictionary, look up the necessary VPD fields
(``initial_locale``, ``keyboard_layout``, and ``initial_timezone``),
and store the fields into the RO VPD. In addition, the ``vpd`` test
also saves the region code into the ``region`` field in the RO VPD.
For example::
.. warning::
Multiple keyboards and initial locales are only supported in M34+.
For this reason, the VPD test defaults to
``allow_multiple_l10n=False``, in which case only the first
keyboard and initial locale will be used for OOBE. To allow
multiple localizations once M34 is being shipped on device, set
.. warning::
The precise values of these VPD fields (e.g.,
``keyboard_layout=xkb:us::eng``) should *not* be retrieved directly
on the shop floor server, since it is an error-prone process to
store the correct VPD values for all valid regions on individual
projects' shop floor servers. Rather, the appropriate region code
should be retrieved from the shop floor server and the ``vpd`` test
should be used to set the precise VPD field values. This ensures
that the VPD field values are consistent and up to date.
Region API
.. py:module:: cros.factory.l10n.regions
.. autoclass:: Region
The :py:func:`cros.factory.l10n.regions.BuildRegionsDict` method is
used to obtain a list of all confirmed regions. In general, code
should not invoke this directly but rather use
.. autofunction:: BuildRegionsDict
.. autodata: REGIONS
.. _where-regions-are-defined:
Where regions are defined
The complete set of confirmed regions (regions available for use in
shipping products) is specified by
.. autodata:: cros.factory.l10n.regions.REGIONS_LIST
In addition, there are two module-level attributes used to accumulate
region configuration settings that are thought to be correct but have
not been completely verified yet.
.. autodata:: cros.factory.l10n.regions.UNCONFIRMED_REGIONS_LIST
.. autodata:: cros.factory.l10n.regions.INCOMPLETE_REGIONS_LIST
If you cannot add a region to the public factory repository, you may
add it to the ``cros.factory.l10n.regions_overlay`` module, in one of
the following attributes:
* ``cros.factory.l10n.regions_overlay.REGIONS_LIST``
* ``cros.factory.l10n.regions_overlay.UNCONFIRMED_REGIONS_LIST``
* ``cros.factory.l10n.regions_overlay.INCOMPLETE_REGIONS_LIST``
There is a reference list of "private" regions, suitable for addition
to board overlays, in the ``factory-private`` repository
.. rubric:: Footnotes
.. [#l10n] "l10n" is a common abbreviation for "localization": "l",
plus 10 letters "ocalization", plus "n".)