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I know these layouts have two-letter codes like 'us'for the US layout. I need a list of all the layouts available and also to pair the two-letter codes to the proper names of the layout to get the not so trivial ones.

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Does the following link help with your question? [How do I enumerate all available keyboard layouts in X.org?][1] [1]: stackoverflow.com/questions/1268572/… –  tink Mar 18 '13 at 22:20
That one sounds interesting but I need a step by step guide to use that. My knowledge of Ubuntu peeks at I can install and run it from an USB flash drive. There is no clear documentation on X.org-s home page of the available layouts? That would seem logical from an open source project. –  superuser Mar 18 '13 at 22:59

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Open a text editor. Copy the code from the stackoverflow question mentioned in the comment to the file. Save the file with the name "getkbdlayouts.py".

Then open a console window. In that window, type

chmod +x getkbdlayouts.py

You may get an error like ImportError: No module named lxml.etree. If so, you need to install the package python-lxml (usually by running apt-get python-lxml).

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