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LibreOffice Notes

LibreOffice is a free substitute for Microsoft Office http://www.libreoffice.org/download/

It is a newer program based on OpenOffice which does still exist.

It is better than Office at opening a wide variety of files.  For example I had a Microsoft Works spreadsheet that Office would not open but LibreOffice would.  I could then save it as an Excel Spreadsheet.  It will NOT open Microsoft Publisher.  I recommend not using Publisher if you need to share the file with others or print it from other computers.

It includes, Writer (Word Substitute),   Calc (Excel substitute), Impress (Power Point substitute), and a number of programs I have not used. A Visio compatible program is now available.  This is a program for drawing flow charts.  See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyM5WoaYoUw for a tutorial.  It probably still has a substitute for Draw (a drawing program) Base (a data base program), Math (a program to write complicated math equations).
I do not know how compatible Impress, Draw and Base are to their Microsoft equivalents.  Writer and Calc are reasonably compatible with a few maddening exceptions.  The biggest of which is they do not default to saving files in a format that the Microsoft products can read.  See below for a workaround for that problem.

It is very good at all kinds of file formats.  For example I had a Microsoft Works spreadsheet that Office would not open but OpenOffice would and I assume LibreOffice would also.  I could then save it as an Excel Spreadsheet.
If you open a file originally created with Microsoft Office, everything will go smoothly.  If you originally crate the file with LibreOffice, it will default to saving it in its native format which can not be read by Microsoft Office.  To avoid this problem either change the defaults is discussed above or, the first time you save the file, use "Save As" and specify that you want to save it in the Microsoft Office Format.  Alternately you can set the default file format to what Office XL uses by following the steps outlined below.

Installation/Setup Notes:
You may want to only install some of the components to save space. For example I did not install the database component (Base) or their drawing component (Draw)

To set default file saving or “save as” format for new files in OpenOffice.org to be the same as Microsoft Office XP:

  1. Launch any LibreOffice program.
  2. Click on Tools and then Options.
  3. Expand the Load/Save section in the left pane by clicking the + (plus sign).
  4. Click on General under the Load/Save section.
  5. In the area labeled as “Default file format and ODF Settings” near the bottom of the dialog window uncheck the entry titled "Worn when not saving in ODF format".
  6.   Now select Document type from the drop down list and change the entry titled “Always save as” to the appropriate one:
     My recommendations are:
    Text Document for Writer files:  “Microsoft Word 2007-2013 XML"
    Spreadsheet:  "Microsoft Excel 2007-2013 XML"
    Presentation:  "Microsoft PowerPoint 97 -2003"
  7. Then click OK to save the settings.
  8. From now on, whenever you want to save a document, the default format will be .docx, .xlsx or .ppt and other Microsoft Office file formats and extensions.

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Rev 7/20/17 fixed