Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Office Suites

One of the main reasons I like Linux distros over Windows is because of how much software they come with out of the box - or at least, easily available. No hunting around for things, just ask the package manager.

But even the package managers have to admit defeat sometimes, and it seems that alternative Office Suites are one of those areas.
As far as I can tell, there are four main options: OpenOffice, LibreOffice, GOffice and KOffice.
The first two are well known enough. Both have pretty good track records, though OO.o may soon be heading away from that thanks to Apache.
GOffice isn't so much a suite as it is a collection of apps that give you most of it, but the down-side is that Abiword and Gnumeric can't always open documents not saved in their own formats - and the OpenDocument formats Libre/OpenOffice uses are the biggest casualty here, as I've yet to make them open one without getting a stream of garbage data.
KOffice on the other hand is a fair competitor to Open and Libre, and as its name suggests is designed to work with KDE. Which kind of makes it not so helpful for those of us who don't run KDE, or want to pull in half the dependencies just to work on our documents.

However, since my Gentoo install has begun to throw up unusual errors when trying to run LibreOffice, errors that refuse to be solved by rebuilding, removing all trace from the home directory and even starting on a fresh user, I'm at a bit of a loss. KOffice seems like overkill for a Gnome-based and mostly lightweight desktop, and as OpenOffice is doing the same as LibreOffice, it too is counted out.
GOffice as mentioned has trouble with the OpenDocument formats, which most of my work is, rather inconveniently, saved in.
This leaves me with a bit of a dilemma, since no one seems to be able to give even the slightest hint on the LIbreOffice errors (if you're curious, look here: I can't work on my work.
For now I've got a temporary stop-gap measure by using the Windows LibreOffice through Wine, but it's far from perfect.
So does anyone happen to know of any LibreOffice-compatibile word processing apps out there?

No comments:

Post a Comment