The Cyrillic alphabet is used for Russian, Bulgarian, Serbian, and other Slavic or Soviet-influenced languages. Preparing computers for Cyrillic requires two steps: Cyrillic character functionality must be installed first, followed by a special keyboard layout for QWERTY-accustomed typists. Keyboards vary for each language, and the commercially-available layouts seldom correspond phonetically to the American QWERTY layout.
With the installation of Russian character functionality, the standard Russian keyboard layout is as follows:
Because this is difficult to learn for those accustomed to the QWERTY layout, we have developed a Mac OS 9 Cyrillic-QWERTY layout that corresponds Cyrillic letters to their homophonic Roman equivalents. This should be added after the regular Russian character functionality is installed, since that process will install fonts and other necessary files. The keyboard file can be downloaded here and should be put into the system folder-->system suitcase. Choosing Cyrillic-QWERTY in the keyboard menu should automatically call up PriamoyProp or Latinskiy, the Cyrillic fonts installed with the language kit.
The Cyrillic-QWERTY layout is as follows:
Use shift for capital Cyrillic letters, alt-option and shift + alt-option for other Cyrillic characters & symbols, apple-function for small Roman, and shift + control + alt-option for capital Roman letters. Check apple menu-->keycaps (keyboard menu set to Cyrillic-QWERTY or font set to PriamoyProp) for all layouts.
For Windows, after Russian character functionality is installed, consider downloading Pete Zelchenko's Modified American-Cyrillic Keyboard. The layout is nearly identical to our Mac Cyrillic-QWERTY. The installation requires you to overwrite the KBDRU file in Windows system files-->keyboards. This has proven problematic with Windows 2000 because of the automatic backup feature.