Archive for the ‘SuSE’ Category
Today, IBM released Lotus Symphony, its version of OpenOffice.org as a free offering to business, government and consumer users.
The productivity suite is free to download. Interestingly the website only presents three applications, “Documents”, “Presentations” and “Spreadsheets.” The Database functionality of OpenOffice.org is apparently missing. The Suite supports Windows XP or Vista and Linux RedHat or Novell SuSE. A discussion about MAC OS X support has already started in the support forums.
Lotus Symphony does naturally support ODF and also can read and write the Microsoft Office formats most of the time. The latest MS OOXML is not yet supported.
Unfortunately this is another species in the jungle called Open Office eco-system.
P.S.: If you are PC veteran, you might remember the Lotus Symphony for DOS, which included Lotus 1-2-3. This is not the same!
While Novell offers its own edition of OpenOffice.org in the Enterprise SuSE offerings, there are packages available for install in the open SuSE Linux project.
Look here for the stable package of Open Office Release 2.2.1 for Open SuSE Linux.
A recent post on the mailing list gives more details.
As an increasing number of companies and institutions migrate to Linux and OpenOffice.org, interoperability becomes more and more important. The world is still geared towards Microsoft’s document formats and that poses barriers to migration, one of which is fonts and their influence on how documents print and break into pages.
The leading Linux distributions in the enterprise space, Red Hat and SuSE delivered some new fonts that are metrically identical to the widely used Microsoft fonts. What does this mean for you? You can receive an MS Office document and use the equivalent font and print it w/o fear of it breaking into a different number of pages. It also means you do not need to update the table of content because of re-pagination. Off course the same is true in the opposite direction ODF –> MS Office document.
I saw first at the Debian Security website that the WordPerfect and StarCalc import libraries used by OpenOffice.org have some vulnerabilities for overflow attacks. Then is spread around the web in all security services.
The flaw allows an attacker to execute arbitrary code. Affected are users that open WordPerfect documents, a rather small number of users. As far as I know, Word Perfect is used a lot by the legal profession. The work around, is to not open WordPerfect documents before you upgrade to the next version or install a patch.
Debian and SuSE have already issued patches.
Ted Haeger lets us know that Novell just released its own edition of OpenOffice.org.
Thanks to Ted I now know why Novell is cooking its own version. Novell feels that the open source model is a good one. They follow the intention of open source to solve one’s own problems and contribute back to the community. In Novell’s case they solve the issues of their Linux customers and benefit all others too. All Novell additions are factored into the main stream OpenOffice.org eventually. While the community does absorb the contributions, Novell does enjoy the benefits of an advanced version that makes their brand of Linux more competitive. That sounds like a fair deal to me.
Now the Novell developers even released a version of Novell Edition OpenOffice.org for Windows. Why? Because they learned from their own experience that it sometimes takes a few baby steps until you are ready to switch from Windows to Linux. Switching from MS Office to OpenOffice.org is such a baby step. Lets hope that the Mac version is not far behind. Although I’m not sure how many Mac users can’t wait to switch to Linux.