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00:00 Intro
00:33 Sponsor: Gain some time to plan your migration from CentOS 8
01:32 FreeOffice
04:02 LibreOffice
07:20 OnlyOffice
10:04 WPS Office
12:09 Lightweight alternatives
13:51 Sponsor: Get 150€ off your Slimbook Executive Ultrabook
14:19 Support the channel

FreeOffice isn’t open source. It’s available as a deb or an RPM, or a basic archive. No Flatpak, Snap or Appimage, though.

FreeOffice does word processing, creating spreadsheets, and presentations. FreeOffice aims to be as compatible with MS Office as can be. FreeOffice gives you a choice between the classic menubar + toolbar combo, and the ribbon interface that MS office uses.

In terms of Office compatibility, I tried a few complex templates, and there seem to be a few issues on word documents, with header images not being in the right place, and elements being moved where they don’t belong.

FreeOffice is free of charge to download, but the free version does lack a few features.

You probably all know about Libreoffice. It has a word processor, a spreadsheet module, a presentation app, but also a flowchart /diagram editor that also doubles as a PDF editor, and a database module comparable to Microsoft Access.

It’s completely open source, doesn’t cost a dime, and is installable in virtually every way you’d ever want: deb, rpm, flatpak, snap, appimage, you name it.

LibreOffice is compatible with the opendocument format, but also with MS office formats. The compatibility with openXML formats, like docx, xlsx or pptx isn’t 100% perfect though.

In terms of interface, LibreOffice is super customizable: not only can it pick up your GTK or Qt theme, but you can also change its icons in the settings, and change how the interface looks and feels. By default, it uses the older menubar + toolbar layout, but you can change that into a ribbon interface, a simplified ribbon, a grouped bar, a sidebar, basically you can do whatever you want, and customize each toolbar to add or remove what you want.

There’s another open source office suite for Linux, and that’s OnlyOffice. It only offers the 3 basic modules: word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations. It’s free to download and open source, and comes as a deb, an RPM, a flatpak, an appimage, or a snap package, so anyone can get it.

OnlyOffice supports the Microsoft OpenXML document format, as well as the opendocument format that Libreoffice defaults to, and the older proprietary office formats as well. Compatibility seems better than FreeOffice, and LibreOffice, at least with my test templates. It actually seems pretty much identical to how MS office renders the same document.

In terms of interface, Onlyoffice isn’t as customizable as LibreOffice: you only get a ribbon interface, and you can’t change what’s displayed in each toolbar. The ribbon will use a dedicated color for each program, if you use the light theme, so they’re still easy to differentiate. Onlyoffice also supports interface scaling, with factors ranging from 100% to 200% with 25% increments.

Now we come to another non open source office suite, WPS Office. You get a word processor, a spreadsheet module, and a presentation module, and you also get a PDF viewer. It offers deb and RPM packages, and it’s also available on flathub, and as a snap.

In terms of compatibility, WPS opens older office docs, newer office docs, as well as their own format. Compatibility seems good, at least with openXML formats, although a little bit less perfect than OnlyOffice. It should be good enough for most people.

By admin

38 thoughts on “The BEST OFFICE SUITES for Linux”
  1. I've tried Libre Office, Only Office and WPS exclusively for almost a year…
    In general, you review of WPS was spot on..
    Libre Office does work, but there are enough small quirks and compatibility issues that make it very problematic when you're collaborating with co workers who use MS office.
    Also, it doesn't seem to integrate with Mendeley citations. And It's more heavy on resource use…

  2. I have tried Only Office many time and it really lacks when it comes to spell check in Spanish. If anyone has an idea of what I might be doing wrong I would greatly appreciate their help.

  3. OnlyOffice was able to open and preserve the formatting and tables in a old .doc single page document i needed to print for work with only minor misalignment. LibreOffice left it as blank space and Google's online editor turned into 3 pages of nonsense. Your video popped up at just the right time because i was about to start re-creating it from scratch in LibreOffice.

  4. I still love the file/toolbar setup myself. Mainly because I see having to use tabs as a minor inconvenience. I like having all my tools spread out before me. But I also started using computers with windows 95 and was just used to it.

  5. Going to have an unpopular opinion: the best word processor is Pandoc + LaTeX. Fully open source, creates beautiful documents, worked with easy to read markdown, allows you to use any text editor you want, and has better equation support than any GUI word processor that I've used. There's a reason that academia has basically converged on LaTeX: it's simply the best at what it does.

  6. As much as I want to use LibreOffice, I cant since it always turned out misaligned when viewed on Word, so I just resort to using WPS because it solves the problems in LibreOffice…..

  7. The one thing I’ve struggled to find in a Linux office suite is the ability to easily create text that has shadows, reflections or gradient colours. MS Office has WordArt and Apple’s iWork apps have those various settings.

    Does anyone know if any of these suites in the video can easily do that stuff?

  8. LibreOffice has the best feature support. WPS Office has tabs and PDF support. Only Office has tabs and alt-keystroke support.

    Kinda hope LibreOffice supports file tabs. Or WPS Office adds alt-keystrokes to Linux, since their Windows version already does that.

  9. TL;DR:
    Onlyoffice has the best compatibility with MS Office and looks similiar to it (has alternatives only to Word, Excel & Powerpoint).
    Libreoffice: default on most distros, someone in the comments suggested it's better if you're typing in arabic. You can also customize it more than Onlyoffice.

  10. After using all those free office suites, I settled for LibreOffice because it's more than the others for features and functionalities. Its UI is very different from MS Office. That's ok.

  11. LibreOffice is the most up-to-date and complete. It looks and runs great on my Fedora 2-in-1 laptop, but terrible on Windows. I still use MS Office 2016 on Windows because of the better dark theme and performance. OnlyOffice would be my next choice if I hadn't already bought MS Office. WPS Office felt unfinished and clunky last time I used it, but perfectly usable. If I didn't have to use Windows for work I'd probably go all in with Calligra.

  12. While I understand that many Linux users are mostly for using Free and Open Source Software and prefer not to use proprietary software or software from major companies, I have found Google Docs to be very efficient for doing pretty much everything I need for my college classes and for work, they have Google Docs (basically word), Google Slides (basically powerpoint), Google Sheets (basically excel) and many others. Also they are used within the browser with a Google Account for free, so no need to pay or install anything into your computer. I understand that Google basically uses our information and things like that, but for those who don't mind using some proprietary or freeware, it's a really efficient office suite.

  13. The only drawback for Libreoffice is the compatiblity to Powerpoint :-/ it keeps breaking layouts, destroys smart art…..
    That would be something you could focus on more: quality of File compatibility – I don't care that much about different UI, but if the file is not compatible to MS Office it is mostly useless to me.
    For example Calc works perfectly well with excel files and vice versa. But especially Powerpoint and Impress don't mix to well :-/

  14. Any idea how to silently install Only office?.
    I'm able to do it with libre since it has a msi installer. Would be great if anyone knows it ☺️

  15. I have been using exclusively open source software for my translation business since it's inception and I haven't had any major dealbreaking issue.

  16. For the compatibility stand point OnlyOffice is indeed the best one, but only because its UI is bother me too much let alone the UI scaling, I rather go with WPS Office for years now.

    I am not a heavy Office Suit user but here's some catches I found on WPS Office:
    – If your locale number format is using coma (,) as decimal separator and dot (.) as thousand separator, you'll see some hiccups at certain point across the suite.
    – WPS Writer : The "Tab Stops" is simply horrible.
    – WPS Spreadsheet : The "Page Setup" is the worse.
    – WPS Cloud : Their Web UI and Android App is not quite compatible with their Desktop App.

    The Tab Stop on Writer :
    – No matter what you set as default measurement unit, it always be "char" as its unit.
    – You can Set a Tab Stop anywhere you like just by clicking directly from your Ruler, indeed.
    – Once you need to edit it, double-clicking your Tab Stop (like you do on MSO) you won't see the Tab Stop manager, instead you'll see the Page Setup window. You have to go to "Settings > Paragraph > Tabs" to manage it.
    – If you type of person who liked to use Tabs Manager to set all your tab stop instead of using Ruler, you'll noticed that once you set your tabs from Tab Manager, you won't see it again in the Tab Manager. Only Tabs that set through Ruler are appears on the Tab Manager.

    The Page Setup on Spreadsheet :
    – All you can do to configure your page margins is by using "Print Preview > Show Margin" then slide the margins as you likes. Don't use Page Setup to do this.
    – Say you need to precisely set your margins through Page Setup, even you only need to change 1 side (e.g. the left one) you have to re-type all the other 3 sides with the same value otherwise you'll see those 3 sides messed up.
    – If your decimal separator is a coma (,) and your Page Setup shows that your left side is 1,2 cm, once try to change it to 1,3 cm (or any other decimal number) it will tell you that "The number format is invalid"

    Compatibility with Web, Mobile and Desktop :
    – Say you have Spreadsheet file that you create from Desktop App and you store it in WPS Cloud so you can share it to your friends via a link. Don't you dare to edit it on Mobile or Web UI, otherwise you might find you file is ruined, even you only editing a single cell.

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