Flag of convenience

The login screen for my installation of Mint 16 was displaying a US flag which struck me as a little odd since I am not an American. Now, I didn’t feel quite as strongly about this symbol of nationalism as the Catalonian who stated that seeing the Spanish flag at login – “hurts my eyes” – but it did give me cause to wonder about how to change the default flag.

Searching for an answer on Google proved remarkably difficult. The posted solution to the Catalonian problem was: “Determine where the Spanish flag icon is located and change the name. Copy a different icon there and rename it.” The US flag is located at /usr/share/mdm/html-themes/common/ img/languages/us.png; however, switching image files around and changing file names seemed a little drastic.

The login screen on my system is based on HTML5. (To test this, check the login window’s “Style” by navigating to Menu – Control Centre – Login Window.) Because of the use of HTML, another option would seem to be be to track down and modify the code that calls up the image file.

A posting on Linux Mint Forums discussed setting the current user on the login screen and points to an HTML file (in the Clouds theme) at: usr/share/mdm/html-themes/Clouds/index.html. Since I use the Mint-X theme, I looked in the /usr/share/mdm/html-themes/Mint-X folder and found a file named index.html. Looking through the code in this file determined that the image file for the flag is established based on the language setting in the operating system.

So, rather than play around modifying HTML code, the simple answer to changing the flag is to change the language setting from the default selected when Mint was first installed. However, even this didn’t prove to be all that simple. The steps to be taken are as follows:

(1) Navigate to Menu – Control Centre – Language Support. This brings up a warning that “The language support is not installed completely” that can be dismissed by clicking on “Remind Me Later”.

(2) Select the desired language choice – English (Canada) in my case – and drag this to the top of the list of available languages (see screen-shot).

language_settings

(3) Click on “Apply System-Wide” and type the root password to authenticate the change.

(4) You may wish to select the same language preference under the Regional Formats tab, and once again apply this system-wide, in order to display numbers, dates and currency formats appropriately.

(5) Reboot and your “flag of convenience” will now be proudly displayed on the login screen.

References:

How I can change the spanish flag.
http://forum.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=90&t=150516

How do I remove flag icons from the login screen? [SOLVED]
http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=90&t=155465

Re: MDM HTML5 Themes
http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=126979&start=260

How to Install and Change the Interface Language in Linux Mint Gnome / Mate
http://en.paperblog.com/how-to-install-and-change-the-interface-language-in-linux-mint-gnome-mate-622001/

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