Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (1445 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] Commercial office suites for Linux?
  • From: C <smaug42@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2012 09:00:47 +0100
  • Message-id: <>
On Mon, Mar 5, 2012 at 07:43, Per Jessen <per@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Frankly, I keep running into too many anomalies in LibreOffice vs.
MS Office. Though I could run Office through Wine, I would rather
have a native solution. I googled it to death, and couldn't seem to
find anything.

Could you be a bit more specific about the anomalies?  I haven't run
anything major and the minor things could usually be fixed with
changes to
settings or creation of macros.

Certainly minor, but annoying. Worst thing really is inconsistent
behavior. Hard to explain, I should have wrote it down while I was
experiencing it. Trying out Lotus Symphony... and so far I like it.
Still would need LibreOffice for dealing with MS formats, but looks
like Lotus is a strong contender. I think I'll blog about it once I
get used to it more.

Surely you know that OO is probably a descendent, or at least
a very close cousin of Symphony.

The other way around - OO was originally StarOffice, and Lotus Symphony
is now based on OO.

Lotus Symphony is essentially an *older* version of
with a new Eclipse based frontend, a few customizations... and not a
lot more (although they did some bug fixing that didn't always make
its way back into the OOo trunk). So, any file format/round-trip
quirks in LS are highly likely to be the same as in the OOo3.0/3.1-ish
timeframe (last time I know of that IBM took a snapshot of OOo for

On top of that, IBM has announced that they are dropping Lotus
Symphony as it is now, and focusing only on Apache Open Office. See:
which states that the Eclipse overlay will no longer be a part of LS
and any future releases of LS will essentially be Apache Open Office.

There are no real top tier *commercial* office software packages
available for Linux that are a prefect match for MS Office. You have (replaced by AOO), Apache Open Office (created out of
the remains of OOo), LibreOffice (forked from OOo), Lotus Symphony
(based on an old release of OOo, and discontinued), KOffice, Caligra
Suite (based on KOffice), and SoftMaker Office, plus a smattering of
others like gnumeric, AbiWord and so on. Outside of that, you have a
few web based office tools.. Zoho, Google and Microsoft are prob the
top choices (Oracle/Sun made and announced Cloud Office... but it was
never released, and LIbreOffice has made noise about a cloud/web based
office suite, but so far nothing is really available beyond tech demos
from the last LibO Conference).

SoftMaker Office is probably the only non-OOo office suite out
there... and while it's pretty good... to be honest, it lacks a lot of
what LibreOffice already has. It has odd issues running on 64 bit...
it doesn't have a Presenter Console (last I checked)... and (again,
last time I checked) if you're trying to evaluate it with the free
version, you can't move files from one install of SMO to another...
the files are locked to the install that created the files (buy a
license and the restriction is removed).

If you want MS Office in Linux, then look into Crossover from
Codeweavers. The new version 11 of Crossover is due out sometime soon
(I don't know a release date, but the Beta/RC cycle for 11.0 should be
finished soon). They explicitly support MS Office, and each release
really improves on the compatibility. Yes it's Wine, but they add on
a lot of tweaks and extras on top of Wine to make things like MS
Office install and work a LOT better. If you hang on just a little
bit and try out Crossover 11.0 once it's released you might be
pleasantly surprised at how well MSO is working.

Bleh... I spent far too much time up to my neck in the world of open
source office software over the past few years :-) It was fun.. and I
miss working for OpenOffice... good times... oh well.

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