Lynn's Software Recommendations

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Suite: OpenOffice

OpenOffice Logo Open Office is a multiplatform, multilingual, open source project. It includes a full function word processor, spreadsheet, drawing program, presentation, and database manager. OpenOffice runs on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Sun Solaris, and FreeBSD. OpenOffice has support for about 50 native languages. OpenOffice can read and write most MS Office formats. OpenOffice does what most epople need it to do.

Why do I recommend this?

Like most technical people, I am competent with Microsoft Office and use it daily. My employer pays yearly for my MS Office license on my work computer. While I don't begrudge Microsoft employees making a living by selling new copies of MS Office every few years, I have 4 computers at home and several old test computers at work. Should I really be buying a half-dozen licenses? I mean honestly, has Microsoft Office really imporved since the 1995 version?

While I'll keep using MS Office at work, I have started to wean myself from MS Office and use OpenOffice at home and on my "miscellanious" computers. I have OpenOffice on my portable USB desktop. It has imported properly my various spreadsheets and documents. Yes, it is a bit more effort for me to use both MS Office and OpenOffice as the interface and options are a bit different, but it allows me to be 100% legal with my harem of old computers.

Details

License Freeware, open source
Main Website www.openoffice.org
Portable Application Yes: get from www.portableapps.com
Portable Size 230MB (as of Nov-2006) by the time you get it installed