Wow, I got some response to my article last week A Free Alternative to Microsoft Excel and Word.
I wrote about the Microsoft Office alternative that I have used for years, and how it has changed ownership from Sun Microsystems to Oracle Corporation (who bought Sun) to the Apache Software Foundation. I also commented about how the program hadn’t been updated in a while, but could read Word 2007 and Excel 2007 files.
The readers responded.
First, I received a quick email from long-time subscriber Sam Boggs to ask if I was aware of LibreOffice.
Are you familiar with LibreOffice? I’ve downloaded both, but haven’t really compared with the old faithful OpenOffice.
I read that OpenOffice is not going to be supported much in the future, that many of the contributors moved to LibreOffice, but that was just a quick online search to read that. Not sure how accurate.
Here’s the filehippo download. At 201 MB, it’s a bit larger than OO.
I did a quick search using Google and found the home web site of LibreOffice. Of course, you can download directly from their home site, also.
John White also wrote about LibreOffice and also Textmaker (which is a commercial program from Ashampoo):
I was a bit surprised by your observations about OpenOffice.
There is an almost identical twin (hatched from the same open source "egg") called LibreOffice (3.4 is the version I use). It both opens .docx and .xlsx files and offers to save them in the same MS-Office 2007 format OR OpenOffice XML or Microsoft Word’s 2003 XML format.
I have but almost never use both MS-Office 2007 and 2010. Instead I alternate between Libre Office and a very FAST and powerful one (cheap but not free) Ashampoo/Softmaker "Textmaker 2010." It looks almost exactly like Word 2003 and offers great options for the toolbar customizing. And, best of all, about 99% of what we knew and used in Word 2003 is as good or better than 2003’s version.
NO screen-hogging ribbon junk and the familiar stuff from 2003 is there. But the speed of loading the program is my favorite feature. I had Textmaker 2010 and loved it but 2012 is even better (the whole suite is $30 via upgrade – maybe twice that for new customers. Ask them for a review copy (or just try it for free).
I’ve now downloaded LibreOffce to give it a try.