What is LibreOffice?

LibreOffice is a suite of programs for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, databases, and vector drawings. It is free to download, use, and distribute. It is available in many languages and runs on Linux, Mac, and Windows.

LibreOffice’s native file formats are OpenDocument (*.ODT, *.ODS, *.ODP, etc.), but it can open and save to many other formats, including Microsoft Office formats (*.DOC, *.XLS, *.PPT, etc.).

To download LibreOffice, go to the LibreOffice website.

LibreOffice is a project of the not-for-profit organization, The Document Foundation.

Help for people still using Apache OpenOffice

Do you know someone who is still using Apache OpenOffice? Have they recently tried to open a .odt, .ods or .odp file and received this error message? “This document was created by a newer version of OpenOffice. It may contain features not supported by your current version.

AOO error message
The notice (pictured) that pops up in Apache OpenOffice doesn’t say so, but even the latest version of AOO (4.1.8, which was released earlier this month) does NOT support features like ODF 1.3, so updating to it won’t help. AOO users would need to “update” to LibreOffice. (LibreOffice users can avoid the problem for OO users by continuing to save files in ODF 1.2.)

Note: other features are lacking in AOO, for example the ability to save files in DOCX format, even though AOO can open DOCX files. LibreOffice can do both. Wouldn’t it be nice (helpful) if the “Update Now” button in AOO took a user to the LO download page?

See also this blog post at LibreOffice.

LibreOffice 6.4 and 7.0 User Guides

I am way behind updating this blog, including mentioning the LibreOffice 6.4 user guides that have been published in 2020. These include Getting Started Guide, Writer Guide, Base Guide, Calc Guide, Draw Guide, and Math Guide.

Calc Guide 7.0 coverTwo volumes of the v7.x series of books have been published recently: Math Guide and Calc Guide.

You can download free PDFs of these books or buy printed copies of the v6.4 volumes (v7.0 print copies may be available later). See this page for links.

LibreOffice 7.0

LibreOffice 7.0 was announced on 5 August 2020. Since then three minor releases have appeared. Significant new features include support for OpenDocument Format (ODF) 1.3; better performance; and improved compatibility with DOCX, XLSX and PPTX files. For details, see the blog post linked above.

LibreOffice produced a visual timeline of derivatives from OpenOffice.org, as shown below. (Click for a larger image.)
Timeline of OO/AOO/LO major releases

LibreOffice 6.2 Calc Guide published

LibreOffice 6.2 Calc Guide front coverIt’s been a long time coming, but an updated version of the LibreOffice Calc Guide has finally been completed by the Documentation Team.

Free PDFs are here: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Documentation/Publications#LibreOffice_Calc_Guide and will be linked from the main LibreOffice website in the new year.

A printed copy can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/libreoffice-62-calc-guide/26019667

Self-publishing using LibreOffice Writer 6

UPDATE: Lulu has changed its website and its publishing process. Therefore, the section on “Using Lulu’s publishing service” in Chapter 16 of my book is out of date. Many things have not been working for publishers, but they are slowly getting fixed. I intend to rewrite that section when the site is working properly again.

Self-publishing with LibreOffice Writer 6My new book, Self-publishing using LibreOffice Writer 6, is now available in paperback or PDF.

Printed copies are available from Lulu.com for US$16.00. Pay at Lulu.com.

Download PDF here. Cost is US$5.00, on the honor system. Please pay using the button below (Paypal or credit card). If you buy a printed copy, you are welcome to a free copy of the PDF.