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March 29, 2013 at 11:30 pm

After booting a fresh EC2 instance with Ubuntu 12.10 this showed up right after login:

WARNING! Your environment specifies an invalid locale.
This can affect your user experience significantly, including the
ability to manage packages.

And when running some apt-get commands I got this:

perl: warning: Setting locale failed.
perl: warning: Please check that your locale settings:
	LANGUAGE = (unset),
	LC_ALL = (unset),
	LC_CTYPE = "de_DE.UTF-8",
	LANG = "en_US.UTF-8"
    are supported and installed on your system.
perl: warning: Falling back to the standard locale ("C").
locale: Cannot set LC_CTYPE to default locale: No such file or directory
locale: Cannot set LC_ALL to default locale: No such file or directory

There are plenty of supposed solutions out there but none worked for me but this one:

# add this line to /etc/environment; then reboot

16 responses to “Fix locale setting on Ubuntu EC2 instances”

  1. Yaron says:

    The locale variables are apparently set by SSH as you connect into the instance, and they refer to locales that are not compiled on the machine. Try this instead:

    sudo locale-gen de_DE.UTF-8 en_US.UTF-8


  2. Cyril Deba says:

    Hi Matthias,

    thanks for the entry, it helped me to resolve the issue with locale settings. There is one more thing to add: when the /etc/environment file is updated, there is no need to reboot – it is enough to re-login with the current user

  3. Gael Lafond says:

    All I had to do is:

    sudo apt-get install language-pack-en


  4. Rosana says:

    I had similar perbloms, to the point where I couldn’t run deluge( torrent client). It terminated with the error : locale::facet::_S_create_c_locale name not valid .I tried your export suggestion, but it was not enough. After a lot of fruitless mucking around, I examined my /etc/default/locale file & noticed that LANG was defined as en_GB.UTF-8:en so I changed that to just the UTF-8 locale. Lo! & Behold deluge is fine & no more errors. I think it may have been caused by a dodgy update script, as its only just happened today.I must also say Roll on, Gnome-Shell 3.2 for Wheezy , because right now in Wheezy we’ve got Gnome 3 sans extensions, which must be the worst of both worlds

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