Learn Korean Hangul Touch Typing (Part 1): Installing the FREE Program

Touch Typing: typing without using the sense of sight to find the keys.

typing-keyboard

This is the 21st century and technology dominates almost everything we do. And from smart phones to computers to tablets, typing is a daily activity.

Likely you’ve already studied “touch typing” in English, but if you’re studying Korean, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to have the same kind of computer dexterity in Hangul that you already enjoy with the English keyboard? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to keep a typed journal of what you’re learning in Korean? Or just impress friends and family back home with your blog posts or status updates that include Korean?

I personally think it’s a big pain in the butt to continually look at the keyboard to try to find the right Hangul letters when typing in Korean. My English typing speed is around 70-80 words per minute, but my Korean typing speed is lagging around 20 or less (and that’s while looking at the keyboard). So, recently, in an effort to increase my Korean language ability while at the same time increasing my Korean typing speed, I downloaded a FREE Korean typing programand you can too! This blog post will show you how to install:

Hancom’s Typing Practice Program (한컴 타자연습).

Hancom Typing Homepage

Task #1: Download the Program

Caution: This program will ONLY work on a Windows computer (thank you Korea). Sorry Mac and Linux users – you’ll have to dual boot, or use a Windows machine.

Head over to Hancom’s Typing Practice homepage (pictured above) to download the program. (The download is that big purple button in the center of the page):

download
The full download is 150 MB.

Task #2: Install the Program

Caution: This program will only install on a KOREAN operating system. (But I have a method – described below – to trick the program into thinking you have a Korean operating system. Get ready to play with regedit.)

only-korean

If you get a window that looks like the one above, don’t worry about it. We’ll just trick your OS to think it’s in Korean and install the program anyway.

No Korean OS? No problem. Trick it to install it.

When a program installs, it takes a look at your registry settings to see what language the OS is in. This can be really useful for some programs like Google Chrome, or Audacity, which will install into the language that your OS is, and not necessarily into a different language not of your choosing. Or course, this can also prove to be a problem when you’re installing a program onto a computer that’s NOT in your native or chosen language.

But… there is a way to trick a program into thinking its installing onto a different language OS. The key is in the registry settings.

Regedit

Open your Windows XP Start Menu and click on “Run…” (in Windows 7, just type “regedit” into the Search bar).

start-menu-run

regedit

In the next window, type “regedit” and hit ENTER:

regedit

When your registry opens, navigate over to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/ControlSet001/Control/NIs/Language”

regedit-change

Scroll to the bottom of the “Language” registry keys and you should notice 2 keys that say “Default” and “InstallLanguage.”

You’ll need to double-click both keys and change the values to 0412 (Korean). (If it’s 0409, that’s for “US English”)

Close the window, and restart your computer to “reset” it into Korean.

(Don’t worry if you see some changes to your Start Menu or other icons after the restart, you can always change your registry keys back to the original language once we get the Typing program installed).

Install the Program

Now that your computer is “set” to Korean, you should have no problems installing the program. Double-click it and go through the installation screens until it’s complete.

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And if you want to, now that you’ve installed the program, feel free to reverse your registry key adjustments back to their defaults. This way, if any new Windows updates come down the pipeline, you’ll get them in the right language.

When you take a look at your desktop, a new icon appears:

hancom-program-icon

Task #3: Launch the Program!

loginAfter launching the program, you’ll see this window. From here, you really have three choices:

  1. Start Typing anonymously:
    alone
    (This is the gray button on the left of the screen).
  2. “Join” the service to create a username to record your progress:
    join
    (The green button on the right of the screen).
  3. Login if you’ve already joined the service.

Joining the service, logging in, and using the program are really outside the scope of this blog entry. So for more information about these three things, please see the follow-up post to this one.

39 comments

  1. Aaron – This was a great solution for me with the exception that now my computer does not recognize the regedit command, so I cannot return my computer to English language keys. How can I do that? Thank you – Christopher

  2. Aaron, I just googled “korean typing tutor” and found this page. I was so excited but I couldn’t make the download work. I followed all the steps, but then the shortcut never showed up on my desktop. When I checked “regedit” I found out my system somehow was always changing “install language” back to 0409, I could never make it stay on 0412. I must have restarted 10 times!

    Anyway, I’m glad to have found your blog. Any recommendations on an online dictionary? or how about an ipad/iphone app that you like? Thanks (just started korean 2 weeks ago!)

    1. Which Windows OS are you using? I’ve successfully modified my “regedit” in both Windows XP and Windows 7 (but never tried in Windows 8 yet). If you send me some screenshots of the process you’ve been using to try to install the program, I might be able to help.

      As for a Dictionary, Naver’s Dictionaries are great. (This link is for the English Dictionary – which I commonly use in English class with students. Or this one is the general Naver Dictionary where you can link to other languages.

      For iPad and iPhone apps, it all depends on what exactly you are looking for. I usually use Google Translate, sometimes the Naver Dictionary app (네이버사전) (which is quite extensive).

      But one of the BEST apps in my opinion is TOPIK ONE for studying TOPIK. It’s available in 4 versions: FREE, Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced.

    2. Hi, just wondering if you ever solved the problem with the program? Because I’m having the same problem where the install language always reverts and I can’t find the icon even though the program is installed into my computer. I’m currently using Windows Vista though .. maybe that’s the problem?

      1. Some of the language problems may come from Windows Updates (if those are enabled).

        If you need to create a new Shortcut on your Desktop for the program, you can go into the Start Menu (or in the C: drive, “Program Files”) and right-click it and select “Create Shortcut.” (Or similar steps – this is from memory off the top of my head.)

        Another problem is just the simple fact that this program was never designed to run on non-Korean systems. If I get some time, I’ll try to look a little more closely at the install options, but for now the best thing you can do if your language reverts and you seem to “lose” it, would be to go back into your Registry Editor (cmd >> regedit) and double-check to be sure your Install Language and Current System Language are set to Korean (0412 I think – double-check the instructions on this post).

  3. I can’t seem to get this to work in Korean. The installation was entirely in Korean, similar to your pictures. However, the program appears in English when I launch it – for example, the login screen appears the same as your screenshot, but the text has been translated into English. When I start the typing practice itself, it turns out to be English typing practice. No Hangul. Any ideas what I might be doing wrong? I changed the locale of my computer to Korean before installation.

    1. Please send me some screenshots. You can do so via our Contact Page.

      I’ll see if I can recreate the error and help you out. I have a feeling it’s because Koreans also need to learn English typing, so the program probably switches languages based on settings on your computer. But I’m not sure.

      Are you running Windows 7?

      1. Hello, First I would like to say “Thanks for you”. I have faced the problem like MC. Please help how can i solve this problem. Thank you.

  4. after change the default and installlanguage I restart the computer but then when the computer start I type the login password but it show that the password is wrong.
    how can I log into my computer again please help!

    1. Try to restart your computer in “Safe Mode” to change the settings again. Usually hold the F8 key after first turning on the computer until the “mode selection screen” comes up. Then choose “Safe Mode.” Sorry for the problems there. What Operating System are you using? I’ve done this in Windows XP and Windows 7. Do you have the Language Bar enabled on the login screen? Be sure it’s not set to Korean when you enter your password.

  5. Thanks to google that i found your page and now i start to learn typing Hangul in the correct way. Your instruction is easy to follow and i’ve installed successfuly the program without any difficulty. Again, thanks for your blog.

    1. Glad to hear. Learning Hangul typing is one of the BEST things I’ve done since coming to Korea. It helps out in SO many ways living here.

  6. I changed both keys in regedit, restarted com but only the Default key got changed apparently. Installed fine. So we only need to change just the Default key. After installation, I reverted back the Default key to my original number. Now I start up the app, and the interface is all in English. Awesome! By default, since it’s in English, the program will let you type in English. You can simply change it to Korean keyboard in the app. (I’m referring to MC’s comment). Go to Options/Statistics, Click on the English button (and it will change to Korean), quit and tada! Simple as that.

  7. I went to the website, and click download for the software but it’s not letting me download it, it would just reload my page but don’t download

        1. Are you located in a country outside Korea? Do you think they might have “blocked access” to the download like Hulu and other US sites do? Maybe you could try using a VPN to access the site with a different IP address. You could search “hide my ass” or “hide my ip” or “hotspot shield” or something. Let me know if you get it to work.

  8. Thanks for sharing.
    Following your steps the program can be installed and run.
    However when learning typing, such as in the “Position Learing” screen, the area which is supposed to indicate the next hangul to type can’t really display the hangul correctly, instead the hangul appears as a blank square.
    Any idea?

    1. Yes, the problem probably is that your computer thinks its non-Unicode language is NOT Korean. You might be able to fix that in your “Language” or “Locale” settings. This link should give you a good start to learn how to.

  9. hi friend i tried this on windows 10 but not working or i didn’t know well how to set it, can u check it on windows10.thanks

  10. Hello. I downloaded the Hamcom program. Now I just need to run it on my computer. I have a Windows 10 computer, so I’m having trouble following the steps. Can you inform me of the alternate steps for a Windows 10 computer. I don’t know where to start. Thank you.

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