Switching from MS Word to OOo Writer

OpenOffice.org is a brilliant office suite, and in a lot of cases can make a very suitable alternative to Microsoft's dominant product.

Nevertheless, OOo can be a bit daunting initially, as sometimes exactly how you perform a particular task can differ between Microsoft's suite and our favourite Free one.

Linux Forums have a great post about switching from MS Word over to OOo Writer and it goes through some common tasks like working with styles, portrait and landscape and using templates.

Despite the fact that it's on Linux Forums, it's not Linux specific so it works fine on the Windows version of OOo too.

Here's a quick taster:

Paragraph and character styles in Writer work in a very similar manner to those in Word. Open the Styles and Formatting box by hitting 'F11' or clicking the Styles icon. Click on ¶ to list Paragraph styles, then right click on 'Text body' and select 'new'.

The 'organizer' tab lets you name and link the style. Just like in the example above, we are going to create two styles called 'Epigraph' and 'Attribution'. Both will be linked to 'Text Body'. The 'Next Style' of Epigraph will be 'Attribute', and the 'Next Style' of 'Attribute' will be 'Text Body'.

Unlike Word, where each screen has options to change several aspects of the style, Writer segments the options to a much higher degree. When creating the 'Epigraph' style, set the font to Italic under the 'Font' tab. Set the left intent to 3cm using the 'Indents and Spacing' tab. And when creating the Attribution style, change the text to 'right aligned' under the 'Alignment' tab.

Read the article here.

Avatar for peter Peter Upfold - http://peter.upfold.org.uk/

Peter Upfold is a technology enthusiast from the UK. Peter’s interest in Linux stems back to 2003, when curiosity got the better of him and he began using SUSE 9.0. Now he runs Linux Mint 9 on the desktop, runs a CentOS-based web server from home for his personal website and dabbles in all sorts of technology things across the Windows, Mac and open source worlds.

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Discussion: Switching from MS Word to OOo Writer

  1. Lee (guest)

    # Posted on 09 March 2007 at 09:09 AM

    Switching to OOo Is something I have done since I got vista, and to be honest from the perspectiver of my uses I don't know how I did without it, built in PDF export is priceless, I use draw to convert scanned images to PDF, so like a free version of Adobe Acrobat, and it has other little things that add to it, such as Math, something I never had anything similar to before, but it is excellent for putting formula's into documents, and just general goodness.


  2. Adam (guest)

    # Posted on 10 March 2007 at 01:25 PM

    after listening to the hype surrounding Open Office, I downloaded it and tried it out. It certainly is a nice competitor to MS Office Xp, but I'm sorry to say Office 07 outstrips it entirely in terms of features and User Interface.

    Switching itself, however is really, really easy. I had no problems in performing almost every task with OO in the first few minutes. One issue I did have though was the options, they seem cluttered and complicated.

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