The Document Foundation Releases LibreOffice 3.3

Four months after leaving OpenOffice.org, The Document Foundation has finally released the first stable version of LibreOffice. Although this is the first stable release, the release is given a version number 3.3 in continuation of the version number of OpenOffice.org.

Although The Document Foundation was started by less than twenty developers, the number has now grown to more than a hundred. This has allowed them to release LibreOffice ahead of schedule.

LibreOffice includes a number of original features which includes:

  • Ability to import SVG files in Draw and edit them interactively
  • Import filters for MS Works and Lotus Word Pro documents
  • Easy to use dialog box for title pages and page number in Writer
  • New tree view in Navigator Tool for Writer
  • Better import of WordPerfect files

Beside these new features, LibreOffice 3.3 also brings a number of extensions such as PDF importer, Presenter View in Impress, report builder etc. LibreOffice 3.3 also has all of the new features in OpenOffice.org 3.3.

Caolán McNamara, one of the lead developers of LibreOffice, has this to say about the release

We are excited: this is our very first stable release, and therefore we are eager to get user feedback, which will be integrated as soon as possible into the code, with the first enhancements being released in February. Starting from March, we will be moving to a real time-based, predictable, transparent and public release schedule, in accordance with Engineering Steering Committee’s goals and users’ requests.

LibreOffice already has very strong backings in the open-source community. LibreOffice 3.3 is already  the default office suite in Ubuntu 11.04 and it seems likely that other Linux distributions will follow suite as well.

LibreOffice 3.3 is available for Linux (both .deb and .rpm), Mac OS X and Windows. You can download it from here.

If you  followed our instruction and installed LibreOffice 3.3 RC 4 in Ubuntu, there is no need to download and install the .deb file again. The final release is exactly the same as the fourth release candidate.

LibreOffice Finally Lands As Default In Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narhwal

After what Oracle has been doing recently, it is no surprise that most of the open-source projects want to distance  themselves  from Oracle. So, when LibreOffice was announced as an alternative to the Oracle controlled Open Office, many Linux distributions offered their support for it. In fact, Mark Shuttleworth even  announced that LibreOffice will be shipped in the place of Open Office in a future Ubuntu release.

Today, Canonical has finally done it by replacing OpenOffice with LibreOffice in the daily build of Ubuntu 11.04 “Natty Narhwal”. This follows the earlier announcement that Canonical is planning to give LibreOffice a run in Ubuntu 11.04 Alpha 2 to see if it can replace OpenOffice in the final release.

The second alpha of Ubuntu 11.04 is to be released 3rd February. LibreOffice will remain as the default office suite throughout the second alpha phase. There is no confirmation that LibreOffice will remain the default office suite in the final release – that decision will be taken later. However, in all likelihood it will remain as the default – unless something very bad happen in between.

The replacement of Open Office with LibreOffice will create a lot of noise, no doubt. But for an Ubuntu user, there will not be that much of a difference. Both LibreOffice and Open Office has almost the same UI right now. And regarding features, at this point most of what LibreOffice has done is import the patches from Go-oo. Ubuntu has always shipped Open Office with the Go-oo patches. So, there also users will not see much difference. However a big difference will be in the speed because LibreOffice uses a larger memory cache than Open Office.

If you cannot wait for Natty and want to try LibreOffice now, here is an easy way to install it easily.

LibreOffice Gets A PPA – Makes Installation In Ubuntu Super Easy!

LibreOffice is a fork of the popular OpenOffice. The fork was done due to differences between the OpenOffice community and Oracle.

Development for LibreOffice has been going on for a while now and it is currently in its second release candidate. LibreOffice and OpenOffice cannot be installed side-by-side. So, to install LibreOffice, users had to manually remove OpenOffice, which is quite bothersome, before installing the LibreOffice .deb file.

However, to make installation in Ubuntu and its derivatives easier, the LibreOffice developers has made a PPA. In addition to making it easier to install, installing from the PPA will ensure that users get the updates regularly.

Before you install LibreOffice through this PPA, remember that it will remove OpenOffice automatically. Also keep in mind that this is not the final release yet.

So, to install LibreOffice, open the Terminal and execute the following commands:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:libreoffice/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install libreoffice

If you start LibreOffice now, you will notice that it looks very ugly. To make it looks consistent with the other applications, execute the command below:

For GNOME

$ sudo apt-get install libreoffice-gnome

For KDE

$ sudo apt-get install libreoffice-kde

[source]

How to Open or Edit PPT, PPTX and PPS Files

ppt-iconRecently, my friend Tiffany wrote me to tell me she was having trouble finding a free and easy way to view PowerPoint files.

I inherited a brand new Windows 7 All-in-One with touch screen   … One of my complaints is that I can’t view a PPS on it, and I’ve tried downloading links (from several places found on Google) to get a PPS viewer, not one of them worked.   Do you know of a place where I can get just the viewer, that will work on 7?

Microsoft PowerPoint is the most used slideshow tool in the world. Even though you’ve probably seen PowerPoint slideshows and know what they are, I’d bet there are still a few of you that don’t know what to do when you get an email with a PPTX attachment in it.

Some of the file extensions associated with Microsoft PowerPoint are .ppt, .pptx, .pptm, .pot, .potx, .potm, .pps, .ppsx and .ppsm.


PowerPoint Viewers

I’ve kept you waiting long enough. Here’s a list of free PowerPoint viewers. In many cases, you can also edit as well as view.

* The apps that can edit PowerPoint files have an asterisk in front.

Windows

PowerPoint Viewer 2007 (Microsoft)

PowerPoint Viewer 2010 (Microsoft)

*Open Office or *LibreOffice

*Lotus Symphony

Mac

PowerPoint 98 Viewer (Microsoft)

*Open Office

Linux

*Open Office

Web

*Google Docs and Google Docs Viewer

*Zoho Office and Zoho Viewer

*Office Live

*ThinkFree

*Slideshare and many others



Conclusion:

As you can see from the list above, there are plenty of alternatives to the full version of PowerPoint. If you only need to view files, the PowerPoint Viewers from Microsoft are the simplest to use. The free office suites, such as Open Office give you lots of options to create and share slideshows. For some, the best alternatives are free web services, such as Google Docs or Slideshare. Users of Mobile devices such as iPhone, Android, BlackBerry or iPad, may not find any free apps for presentations, but they can probably use some of the free web viewers.


Oracle Asks Founders Of The Documents Foundation To Leave

After Oracle acquired SUN Microsystem, some leading members of the OpenOffice.org community forked OpenOffice.org as LibreOffice. They also set up The Document Foundation to continue the independent works of the OpenOffice.org community.

However, Oracle is not taking their move well. They want the founders of The Documents Foundation to leave the OpenOffice.org council. According to Oracle, their works with The Documents Foundation and LibreOffice will conflict with that of OpenOffice.org.

In many FOSS projects there is usually a free exchange of codes and ideas between the original project and the forked one. There is however little or no competition between them. The fact that Oracle mentions conflict of interest suggests that they see LibreOffice as a competitor and that they want tighter control over the direction that OpenOffice.org takes.

LibreOffice already has backing from a lot of companies including Google, Red Hat, Canonical and Novell. Moreover Mark Shuttleworth has also said that future releases of Ubuntu will ship with LibreOffice, not OpenOffice.org.

So, for now LibreOffice seems to be winning; although the developers will in all likelihood get kicked out from a project they have been working on for years.

[source]

Save Money on Office 2010 or Get a Free Office Suite

no-word Microsoft left out a key ingredient in it’s recipe for getting everyone to use it’s newly released Microsoft Office 2010. They failed to offer Office 2010 upgrade discounts to the current users of Office 2007. What’s up with that?

office-2010

There is still hope for those wanting to save money on Office 2010. Microsoft is offering free upgrades to 2010 for those buying and activating Office 2007 or upgrading from Office 2003 to 2007. The best savings are for those upgrading from Office 2003 to Office 2010, as detailed in a post at PC World. The post mentions that there are several restrictions on the free upgrades. Due to the restrictions, many people and companies will still be paying a lot of money for a full featured and modern office suite. I have to wonder if MS Office is really worth all the trouble. After all, there are several free alternatives to MS Office.

Many companies, home users, local governments and schools have saved big money by scrapping Microsoft Office and switching to Open Office 3.2. Since Microsoft Office is so expensive, now is a good time to ask yourself if OpenOffice, which is completely free, could replace your existing Microsoft Office 2007. OpenOffice has a some great FAQs that can help you decide if it’s a good deal for you. Take a look at “Why OpenOffice.org“.

open-office-ad

There are plenty of questions raised when considering the cost of an office suite. Have you asked all the right questions?

MS Office 2010

OpenOffice.org


How To Install OpenOffice 3.2 in Ubuntu 9.10

OpenOffice 3.2 has been out for about a month now. It has various improvements over the previous version like faster startup time, support for open standards like ODF and better compatibility with Microsoft Office 2007.

Although it has been out for more than a month, it is still not (and probably never be) available in the official repository for Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala. As OpenOffice.org makes the source available at the time of the release, it is possible to install it using the source right at the time of release in Ubuntu Karmic as well. However, installing from source cannot exactly be called user friendly and you will not get updates if you installed from the source. So, even if you had installed it from source earlier, it is recommended that you install it with this method.

The OpenOffice.org Scribblers team in Launchpad has however packaged and put up OpenOffice 3.2 in their PPA. So, to install OpenOffice 3.2 in Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala, follow these steps:

  • Open Terminal/Konsole.
  • Add the PPA using the command:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:openoffice-pkgs/ppa

  • Update the software list with the command:

sudo apt-get update

  • If you have installed OpenOffice 3.2 from source, remove it with the command:

sudo apt-get remove openoffice*

  • Now, install OpenOffice with the command:

sudo apt-get install openoffice.org

  • If you have GNOME, run the command:

sudo apt-get install openoffice.org-gnome openoffice.org-evolution

  • If you have KDE SC, run

sudo apt-get install openoffice.org-kde openoffice-kab

Now that the installation is done. You can find OpenOffice under Applications -> Office in GNOME. In KDE SC, you will find it under KickOff -> Applications -> Office.

OpenOffice location in GNOME Menu
OpenOffice in KDE SC's KickOff Menu