I live in Norway so I have my iPad 2 language set to Norwegian. Most of the books I read in iBooks are english. The dictionary is English which is great, however I often try to look up words that are not part of the dictionary. I am then provided with a "search on Wikipedia" option.

Unfortunately this option uses no.wikipedia.org (Norwegian Wikipedia). I wonder if there is a way to change which Wikipedia version iBooks uses? (Without changing the language of the device.)

1 Answer 1


Yes there is, although you have to modify the iPad's files, so you either have to jailbreak your iPad, then use an app called iFile (paid with a free trial) or openSSH (free but more complicated - I used iFile), or find some way to modify your files without a jailbreak.

An explanation

iOS apps store data on "property list" files. To localise an app they have a property list file that stores all the stuff in the app that they want to change, and what to change it to. The one we are interested in has a field dealing with the Wikipidea search URL, all we have to do is change that URL to go to the English Wikipidea instead of the Norwegian one.

Steps (note that I am using iFile)

  1. Using your chosen file manager navigate to /var/mobile/Applications
  2. You should see the names of your apps as well as some random characters, if you only see the random characters then click the settings button (bottom left), go to preferences and turn on "App names"
  3. Scroll down until you see the "iBooks" folder
  4. In the iBooks folder, click "iBooks.app"
  5. Scroll down until you see the folder "no.lproj" - this is the Norwegian language folder
  6. Click on the file "Localizable.strings" open it with the property list viewer - this is the main file that deals with localisation
  7. Scroll down to near the bottom until you find the field called "Search_Wikipidea_URL", tap on it
  8. You should see a text box with the URL "http://%[email protected]/wiki/%1$@", change it to "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%1$@"
  9. Click "Done", then exit iFile
  10. That's it!

Now to test it go to iBooks. When you search Wikipidia it will show the English version. I tested this on my iPod (yes, I put my iPod into Norwegian!) and it worked, so if you have a problem and want me to post pictures for the steps then just leave a comment!

  • 2
    Phone Disk, no longer supported by Macroplant is an easy way to mount an iOS device in Finder as a volume. After installing, go to the iBooks folder by clicking its menu bar icon -> "yourdevicename" -> Change Connection Root -> iBooks. The Ctrl-click and Reveal package contents to follow @PatrickWard 's directions to no.lproj. Hope this helps macroplant.com/phonedisk
    – Ethan Lee
    Aug 30, 2012 at 20:29
  • you may be able to do this with phoneview as well. (I don't have a device to test on - am traveling). Phoneview is from ecamm.com/mac/phoneview
    – ICL1901
    Sep 3, 2012 at 15:17

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