Ubuntu Japanese Team provides Ubuntu Desktop CD images which include full Japanese language support from main repository and special packages which improve Japanese Ubuntu environment.
Japanese Ubuntu desktop users
Make it easy to use Ubuntu for Japanese users and promote Ubuntu in Japan
Fix following Japanese specific problems and provide "Just Work" Japanese Ubuntu environment.
Character encoding problem
In Japan, UTF-8 and follwing character encodings are used. This sometimes causes [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mojibake Mojibake] at different situations.
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shift_JIS Shift JIS] Shift JIS is widely used for file names in zip archive. This is because Shift JIS has been default Japanese encoding of Windows and classic Mac OS Japanese edition. On Ubuntu, Shift JIS file names in archives are not correctly processed by unzip program. This causes Mojibake when we extract archived files received from Windows or Mac users. We distribute patched unzip package on our package repository which supports Shift JIS to UTF-8 conversion. This works fine for Japanese users, but may break file names coded in other multibyte character encodings which overlap Shift JIS encoding table.
ISO-2022-JP is a de facto standard encoding for Japanese E-mails. Evolution, the Ubuntu default mail client, uses UTF-8 for headers (Subject, From and so on) and encodes to [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIME#Encoded-Word Q-encoding] ([https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/evolution-data-server/+bug/62395 LP#62395]), but many mail clients used in Japan can't handle Q-encoded Japanese UTF-8 headers. We distribute patched evolution-data-server packages which supports B-encoded ISO-2022-JP Japanese headers. This works fine for Japanese users, but not suitable for users who use other languages and want to use Q-encoded UTF-8 headers.
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EUC#EUC-JP EUC-JP] EUC-JP is Japanese character encoding which is widely used on UNIX. We rarely receive zip or tar.gz archive which includes files encoded in EUC-JP. Our unzip package detects EUC-JP encoding whenever possible, but this is imperfect. This is because encoding table of EUC-JP overlaps Shift_JIS in part.
There is no completely free and high quality Japanese font. Ubuntu uses Kochi font which is DFSG free, but this font is inferior of quality to commercial Japanese fonts. Other commercial distributions sold in Japan bundle commercial Japanese fonts. This font issue is barrier to expand use of Ubuntu in Japan. There are "IPA Font" and "IPA Mona Font" which is high quality and free-for-use Japanese Font. Unfortunately these fonts are not completely free([http://www.ubuntulinux.jp/products/JA-Localized/license-ipafonts license]). Since we think that high quality Japanese fonts is essential for promoting Ubuntu in Japan, we distribute IPA Font and IPA Mona Font packages and our Desktop ISO image includes IPA Mona Font.
We can input Japanese on Ubuntu with SCIM and Anthy. These open source Japanese input programs are under intense development and many Japanese Ubuntu users wants to use new improved version. We distribute newer versions of SCIM, Anthy and other packages of related programs to meet demand.