Sample Macro

Insert Non-English Language Characters

Written by Stan Jones and Travis Jones, Insight Software Solutions, Inc.

What it does

A family member teaches high school French and frequently needs to type French characters that are not available on an English keyboard. She could have installed a French language keyboard and learned the combinations necessary to type the characters needed. Instead, we created Macro Express popup menus that she could easily use.

After seeing how well this worked for her, we have created several additional macro sets for a few other European languages. These macros provide a quick, simple method for inserting non-English language characters into other applications.

To install

Download the macro file for the language needed and save it to your hard drive. Open the macro file or import the macro into your existing macro file by clicking File, Import, Import Macros.

DescriptionMacro Express 3Macro Express Pro
French language charactersumfrench3.mexumfrench.mex
German language charactersumgerman3.mexumgerman.mex
Portuguese language charactersumportuguese3.mexumportuguese.mex
Spanish language charactersumspanish3.mexumspanish.mex

To use

Press the F7 key or, for French and Portugese either F7 for lowercase letters or F8 for uppercase letters, to open the popup menu. Double-click on the character needed or type the associated letter or number and it is inserted directly into the document currently in use.

How it works

When typing in an application and you need to insert a character, press the assigned hot key to open a popup menu. Select the character needed by pressing the associated letter or number. The character is inserted into the application and the menu closes. You can then continue typing in your application.

We used the Name and Scope menu option because you can easily see the characters to choose from, plus you don’t need to use the mouse to activate the macro. Just press the associated letter or number to insert the character.

Because of the number of French and Portuguese characters available, two popup menus were created for each language, one upper case and the other lower case. You can edit the menus to display the items in any order you want. Or add/remove characters from the menu as needed.


The characters may or may not display correctly if the receiving application is using a non-standard font. Macros have only been created for a few languages. Users are invited to contribute other language sets to be posted for download.


– Macro Express 3.5 or later
– Macro Express Pro