I installed TeXworks and I was trying to install a spell checker but I couldn't. I installed OpenOffice but nothing changed, the combo-box of spell checkers in TeXworks is empty. I am working on Windows.

  • Did you install the OpenOffice.org dictionaries into TeXworks as described in the manual? – ChrisS Mar 27 '15 at 0:47
  • Thanks .. The manual is really useful and it worked perfectly. can u post it as an answer – SMH Mar 27 '15 at 0:55

As per the TeXworks manual, the procedure to install spell checking dictionaries in TeXworks is as follows.

  1. Download the dictionary corresponding to your desired language from the OpenOffice.org extensions site.
  2. Change the file extension of the downloaded file from .oxt to .zip and extract the files with your archive utility of choice.
  3. Open TeXworks and select Settings and Resources from the Help menu. A dialog window will open with a link to the TeXworks resources folder.
  4. Click the link to open the resources folder. If there is no dictionaries subfolder there yet, then create it now. Open the (possibly newly created) dictionaries subfolder.
  5. Copy the .dic and .aff files from the downloaded .zip file to the dictionaries subfolder.
  6. Close and reopen TeXworks. The dictionaries should be listed under the Spelling item in the Edit menu.
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    I have the same problem, but the answer given above shows that we are still in the software Stone Age. I can’t do any of those things recommended; the installer program should do all this for me. What’s wrong with you programmers? – G. 't Hooft Dec 21 '15 at 23:30
  • It works perfectly!!! Thank you! :-) – nagylzs Nov 5 '17 at 10:46
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    @G.'tHooft that's such a harsh comment about a free and open source software most likely developed with love and lots of free time. Pointing out issues is very useful and feedback always welcome but you should watch out on how you formulate things because you sound ungrateful. Any additional feature has an initial cost as well as maintenance cost I'm sure it's only a question of time. – arkan Jun 11 '20 at 8:41
  • OK, I’m sorry to have been offensive, there are many very good things about TeX and LaTeX to be mentioned, let me be clear about that. Also, yes indeed, they are free while many other applications are expensive and do’t work so well. – G. 't Hooft Jun 12 '20 at 19:59
  • But I thought that it should be obvious and not at all understood as a “harsh comment” that we are still in the Stone Age. How long ago did the first TeX see the light? Where will we be 50 years from now? I can see possible avenues for improvement everywhere, in particular the user interface of software. Please continue the good work with new smart ideas. – G. 't Hooft Jun 12 '20 at 20:12

If you happen to be a Linux user, symlinks help you implement the accepted solution much faster. I have done this with Ubuntu 16.04 and TeXworks 0.6.4.


  • Re spell-chekers and so, according to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hunspell

    Hunspell is based on MySpell and is backward-compatible with MySpell dictionaries. While MySpell uses a single-byte character encoding, Hunspell can use Unicode UTF-8-encoded dictionaries.

  • Dictionaries are typically installed in /usr/share

    • Check with ls /usr/share/*spell* -d what they are. In my case, the directories are aspell, hunspell, myspell.
  • TeXworks will want pairs of *.aff *.dic files.

    • So you can search with find /usr/share/*spell* -name *dic | sort. These files are in hunspell and myspell directories.

    • I was lacking some. To get the catalogue, do apt search hunspell-; the trailing hyphen helps skimming the search results. You can then shortlist the packages you want from the locale tag, say hunspell-pt-pt for Portuguese of Portugal.

  • TeXworks has it in section 4.3 Spell-checking of the manual that

    Before using the spell-checker, you need to install dictionaries in the right folder of TeXworks: [resources]\dictionaries. The [resources] folder can be accessed easily via Help→Settings and Resources. . . .

    Linux users forgive the backward slash and those folder for directory. For me [resources] this is ~/home/user/.TeXworks


  1. Install system-wide your preferred package(s) with sudo install hunspell-[your choice].

    You will find that the directory list ls /usr/share/hunspell contains the aff/dic files of your choice now.

  2. With ln -s /usr/share/hunspell [resources]/dictionaries I linked one-off the entity dictionaries to the full set of HunSpell dictionaries installed system-wide.


Basically, any time I want a dictionary for TeXworks I install it from the HunSpell suite via the package management software.

I then find it up and running anywhere, and in TeXworks. I don't have to roam around the internet, rename, decompress and move around files.


Since Hunspell is a superset of MySpell, I got the Hunspell family of dictionaries in the hunspell directory even after installing the myspell-tagged packages


You can download en-GB.dic and en-GB.aff dictionary files from https://github.com/hl-ren/Hunspell-TeXworks. en_GB.dic currently contains 87723 words.

In Windows 7, copy the files en_GB.aff and en_GB.dic to the path C:\Program Files\MiKTeX 2.9\hunspell\dicts\.

  • Thank you for your revision :) @epr8gayuh – hlren Nov 13 '20 at 10:26

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