Aaron\'s Live Writer Blog

December 1, 2010

Why is spelling greyed out for me in Windows Live Writer?

Filed under: Live Writer, Spell check, Wave 3, Wave 4 — Tags: , , , — Aaron Bregel @ 8:00 PM

I have really been ignoring what search terms land people at my blog but there are a lot of things that it looks like people might need help with that I have not blogged about yet.  One of the search terms from yesterday was “spell check greyed out in Live Writer”. 

Spell Check in Windows Live Writer 

If you ever run into this, what has happened is your dictionary language has been set to “(None)”.  I cannot explain why this might be the case but there is an easy fix.  Bring up the Options dialog (drop the Blog accounts drop down and select Manage blog accounts) and then select Spelling and then select the dictionary language you want to check spelling in.  The Spelling option will no longer be greyed out in the ribbon.

Live Writer Options dialog

November 16, 2010

Adding additional dictionaries to Live Writer

Filed under: Live Writer, Spell check, Wave 4 — Tags: , , — Aaron Bregel @ 1:56 PM

While Windows Live Writer only will spell check in one language at a time, you can add additional dictionaries so you can check your blog post for spelling errors beyond the language in which you installed Live Writer.  Currently there are 33 base languages that you install a dictionary for (see the table at the bottom of this post).  Some dictionaries support differences depending on how words are spelled in that country, for example, the English dictionary will spell check words for United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada.

To add an additional dictionary for Live Writer you need to install the language setting for Windows Live that you would like to use.  In your Windows Control Panel select Clock, Language, and Region.  Here you will see Windows Live Language Setting.  Click to run this application and then select the location for the dictionary you want to install.  This will run the setup program so complete the install.  When it is done you need to go back into the Windows Live Language Setting application and select the language that you originally installed.  This will run a very quick setup program.  If you do not do this, when you run Live Writer it will show your entire user interface (UI) in the new language you pick and not the original one you installed.  You can repeat this process to add as many dictionaries as you need.

Windows Control panel   Windows Live language setting in Windows control panel

After you have installed the new dictionary you can set it as the default or switch dictionaries in the Options dialog.  Drop down the Blog accounts drop down and select Manage Blog accounts. In the Options dialog select Spelling and then you can select from the list of installed dictionaries. Below shows the English and Spanish dictionaries installed.

Windows Live Writer options dialog


List of dictionaries you can install for Windows Live Writer

Language Language ID
Arabic ar
Basque eu
Bulgarian bg
Catalan ca
Croatian (Latin) hr
Czech cs
Dutch nl
English en
Estonian et
Finnish fi
French fr
German de
Greek el
Hebrew he
Hungarian hu
Italian it
Korean ko
Latvian lv
Lithuanian lt
Malay ms
Polish pl
Portuguese (Brazil) pt-br
Portuguese pt-pt
Romanian ro
Russian ru
Serbian (Cyrillic) sr-cyrl-cs
Serbian (Latin) cr-latn-cs
Slovak sk
Slovenian sl
Spanish es
Swedish sv
Turkish tr
Ukrainian uk

August 17, 2010

What is new in Wave 4 windows Live writer since the beta?

This is a quick post to capture some of the highlights of what has been added or changed since the first Beta release of Wave 4 Windows Live Writer.  The development team is not done yet and this is not the full list of changes.  I will have individual posts that give more details about some of these items over the next few days.  Many of these changes are based off of direct Beta feedback or reinforced changes the development team wanted to make but needed customer feedback to push the work to the top of the list.


This did not quite make the Beta but now Live Writer has jumplists on Windows 7.  Right click on the application icon in the task bar and you will see jump list entries for recent drafts and recent posts.

Drafts and Posts on the application menu.

This is another that we new we wanted to change after moving away from the sidebar and many customers let us know that this was a must have.  We hope you like the fact that you now have a way to move quickly to drafts or posts via a “most recently used” like list.


Much better theme detection

As WordPress has changed over the years Writer has not kept up with the theme changes.  I would like to think that Live Writer is back on par and can accurately detect all current themes from WordPress including their new WP 3.0 theme Twenty Ten.  The theme detection changes are not exclusively for WordPress.  Writer will now work a lot better with the new custom Blogger themes also and should work better for really any blog server you use.  WYSIWYG is much better in Blogger now.  I should note that Writer still cannot themes for blogs marked as private on servers such as WordPress.

Post draft to blog now has a ribbon button

This one kind of surprised us.  People really wanted a ribbon button that post draft to blog.  We read many reports where people say that they post a draft to their blog and then directly go to the web to actually publish the post from there.  No one really went on to explain why they need to do the extra step of publishing from the website but since y’all asked for it we were able to accommodate you.  This moved the “Add blog account” button to the Blog accounts drop down list. 

Much better copy/Paste from Microsoft Office

Writer has always had issues with what is the “right” way to paste content from your clipboard.  Should it paste everything that was there.  Does it try and make things “web friendly” and exclude stuff on the clipboard that is there but is not needed?  With Office there is a lot of CSS on the clipboard that will not be needed in your blog post.  If it was pasted it would really bloat your post.  We think we have a good compromise of pasting what you need to keep the formatting.  Bullets/numbering, heading styles, etc. all should paste better when copying from Office into Writer.  I will give a lot more details and examples in a separate post.

Updated spelling dictionaries

Yes Live Writer dictionaries were really out of date.  It now have the same ones that are included with Office 2010.  Live Writer will have updates for all languages that it is released in.  It also has an updated autocorrect list that matches the English list in Office 2010.

Photo Album improvements

Photo albums should upload faster now.  This is true in Live Writer and also in Live Mail.  In Live Mail there is also a better indication as to where you can add additional photos to your album.  Live Mail also has some UI to set of a Photo Album expires after 90 days or not.

More keyboard shortcuts

There are more keyboard shortcuts which should appear as help topic on the web and I will have a separate post with the full list.


Hopefully this small list make you happy and that the build works much better for you.  Please keep leaving feedback in the forums or on feedback.live.com.

Update: Here is where you can download the new build from: http://explore.live.com/windows-live-essentials-beta

June 7, 2010

Removing entries in the custom dictionary from Live Writer

Filed under: Live Writer, Spell check, Wave 3, Wave 4 — Tags: , , , — Aaron Bregel @ 7:40 PM

One of the things I hope to do with this blog is to make comments about what users are tweeting about for Live Writer.  A topic from a few weeks back now was a topic about how to remove an entry from your custom dictionary once you have added it.  This is one place where Live Writer does fall short.  The Add menu item is there but we do not have the ability like you do in Microsoft Word to edit your list of words you have added.  As the post points out this is just a text file that you can edit in any text editor like Notepad. 

One thing I would note is to make sure you do not leave any gaps in the list and that you only have one word per line.

A great idea for a plug-in would be one what lets you first import from Word/Office so you have the same custom dictionary in both Office applications and Live Writer for spell checking and also just lets you edit the list without having to dig down into your application data folder and find the file you need to modify.  I’ll add this to my todo list to work on some day.  Leave a comment if you beat me to it.

Blog at WordPress.com.