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OpenOffice vs Microsoft Office 2010





quex
In a sideline from this thread, I am trying to pick software for an undergrad's first laptop. She's going for the mechie engineering degree, and all specialty programs will be available on school workstations; that is, she doesn't need to run any calculations/modeling stuff. What she DOES need is an OS and an office suite. On the assumption that Windows 7 is now unavoidable (this machine is intended for a minimum 4-year life span, so it's gotta be as future-ready as possible), we're now trying to hammer out the following:

Is it better to buy Microsoft Office 2010, download OpenOffice, or install a previous version of MSOffice?

...which breaks down into the following questions:

How usable is OpenOffice for someone schooled in Word and Excel?

How stable is Office 2010? (still very early, but have any major glitches come to light?)

Does either program offer a considerable advantage over Office2007?


I know you're all geniuses here; I really, really appreciate any advice you'll share with us. Thanks much in advance, and taihen doumo.
ahnguye5
Personally, I'm still using office 2007 software despite knowing about open office for a while now. The main reason I'm still using the former is because I don't want to spend time getting used to a different interface -- there may not be any major differences and it may not be difficult at all but I just rather not. Case in point, my younger sister is off to college with her new netbook and refused to use OpenOffice even after I told her it was free. I draw the line when I have to spend money though; I would rather acquaint myself with open office than spend $100+ on software.

Since your undergrad is schooled in word and excel, you may have to get 2010 for her. I've been using the beta for awhile and there's a lot of new things that incorporate more media and online productivity. It depends on the end-user really, let her decide.
menino
Open office is good, but I don't use it, because everyone else in my office uses office2007, and we receive and send files in excel, word etc, so it would be a problem to open them properly.

It would be great for a student to use, as it has compatibilities with MS office as well.

I believe that it is based on java, which requires the run time environment to be run at all times for the office programs to run.

If you do run Office 2007 as a backup... I'm sure it will be used more prominently than openoffice.
OpenOffice needs to be run by the users own decision, as its not as easy or interactive to use as Office 2007, and in my opinion, easier to learn, and easier to get help from, I mean from the internet or with another student.

Best of luck to her.
cemycc
Yea OpenOffice is good, he have nice features, you can use it very simple but when all the ppl from your work use microsoft office you need to use it too Smile

I will test Office 2010 when i will find a stable version
harismushtaq
In my opinion, OpenOffice is a very good productivity suite that is easy to learn. It will be easy for a student to get her hands strong over it. I can still find word and excel files that do not open properly on open office but that will be a case of one in one hundred.

Comparing MS Office 2010 to 2007, I would say that 2010 is faster than 2007 and easier to use. 2007 version was a radical change in user interface I think it was not as complete as 2010 is.
jwellsy
MS Office will be ~$60 at college. But, it won't save a pdf without also buying Acrobat. OpenOffice has pdf as a standard save option. She will need to save things as a pdf.

Go with OO at first then if she needs MS Office that could be a birthday or Christmas present.
jwellsy
She is going to need to do some CAD drawings. A easy to learn CAD program is Google's Sketchup. I have been using Sketchp Pro to draw some pretty elaborate P&ID's (Piping an Instrumentation Drawings). One company that I do some work for, uses it as their in house drafting tool standard. Sketchup Pro license is $5 a year.
mexiwithacan
I think if she were to join a startup or even launch her own startup, then OpenOffice.org would be the cheaper way to go. Although, I guess even then perhaps the $100 or $200 price would be a drop in the bucket for those companies.

The only good use I've found for OpenOffice.org is installing it on a U3-enabled USB drive. This allowed me to run spreadsheet software on computers where I was not allowed to install software. I found this combination to be very helpful in my previous job as an engineer/consultant.

I guess I'm not sure what the real benefit is to upgrading Office all the time. I haven't noticed much of a difference from the user side going from 2003 to 2007, although the ability to see more than 2^16 (= 65536) rows in a spreadsheet was nice.

With Office 2007, you can download a free add-in from Microsoft to allow you to save documents as PDFs. You can get that here:

"2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as PDF or XPS"
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=4d951911-3e7e-4ae6-b059-a2e79ed87041&displaylang=en

I assume the same will be available for Office 2010.

Conclusion

Unless someone is committed to "doing his or her own thing" from a career perspective, then it's probably best to jump on the Microsoft train and adopt the latest version of Office for whatever the price happens to be.
quex
jwellsy wrote:
She is going to need to do some CAD drawings. A easy to learn CAD program is Google's Sketchup. I have been using Sketchp Pro to draw some pretty elaborate P&ID's (Piping an Instrumentation Drawings). One company that I do some work for, uses it as their in house drafting tool standard. Sketchup Pro license is $5 a year.


Woah, Google has a CAD program? O.O I was completely unaware of that. Now I want to play with it myself. :D Thanks for the advice!
quex
jwellsy wrote:
MS Office will be ~$60 at college. But, it won't save a pdf without also buying Acrobat. OpenOffice has pdf as a standard save option. She will need to save things as a pdf.

Go with OO at first then if she needs MS Office that could be a birthday or Christmas present.


Wait a second, isn't Primo still free? Last I worked with a PC, there were a ton of options to save Office stuff as a PDF for free... CutePDF Writer and all that. There were some good ones, too... could remove passwords and restrictions, re-enable editing. Hope they haven't all gone to pay-only versions or something.
jwellsy
http://sketchup.google.com/

There are lots of free options on how to create a pdf. I didn't know about that D/L link Mexi posted, that is way cool. I'll def try that one.

She is also going to be doing a lot of math, all the way through Differential Equations (which is a good spectators sport, if you try to understand it your head will explode). Matlab by Mathworks is a free popular package.
http://www.mathworks.com/programs/techkits/techkit_ml_b2.html?ref=ggl&s_cid=adw_na_search_matlab_kit

A paid option that a lot of industries use is Mathematica by Wolfram Research.
http://www.wolfram.com/
silverdown
I use MS Works since it came with my Windows 7 Home Premium.
snowboardalliance
I've switched from Open Office to Microsoft Office (2007) because it's really a necessity when working collaboratively with other MS users. Something many of us are stuck with. Don't know much about the newer version but I see no need for it for many years.
aningbo
ms office 2010 is pretty decent. like the interface too.

i dont know about the other though. but then.. paid software are better than those open source any day.
bjornhoogeveen
Simple for me: office 2010 works great. I've used open office for a while, but I didn't like the way it works. I say office 2010 is just simply great.
Asap170
Well I just bought my new laptop and I don't want to install Microsoft Office 2000. I have OpenOffice on here, but my experience isn't the same. I grew up with Microsoft: Operating Systems and Software. It's in my blood. I am thinking of purchasing Microsoft Office 2010. If your a Microsoft lover then I say buy it. If you don't really care and don't want to spend any money then I would go with OpenOffice.
weableandbob
I like Open Office better personally. MS Office has been a pain to use for me ever since 2003.
chartcentral
Microsoft Office is still the premium office suite when it comes to features, user-friendliness and usability. OpenOffice.org is just the open-source and free alternative (but very good enough for your everyday basic use). Smile
bacbac
MS 10 are better, but open office are free..
ibrahim43
Arrow Microsoft Office 2003 Wink
Ghost900
If your going to get the Microsoft Office Suite then I would recommend 2010 as it is improved quite a bit over 2007 and is not going to be much more money.

I have used Open Office and know others that use it and it runs quite similar so the learning curve is not a large one. Some of the more advanced features may take some looking to find until you adjust but it may be worth it since the software is free.
mgeek
MSOffice 2010 has more features than Open Office. A very useful feature of MSOffice is OneNote. A student would appreciate it.
meep
I use OpenOffice myself, because I don't like the philosophy behind proprietary software.
For me, OpenOffice does all what it needs to do, and I've never had any problems with it, I'm still in 10th grade though so I'm not really sure if it's comparable (I don't need to make complex spreadsheets etc).

I guess it depends on personal preference
Radar
For general use I would recommend OpenOffice, but for more complex tasks, perhaps the features of Office and the familiarity would win out.
standready
Will she need to "hand-in" files? I don't know if OpenOffice is compatible MS Office 2010. Earlier versions yes. Learning curve is similar between the two. MS mostly likely has more features.
As others have suggested, start with OpenOffice, then "add" MS Office 2010 to the computer later if needed.
During the 4 year life span you hope for, both packages will have upgrades available. OpenOffice upgrades will cost zero compared to MS.
Arseniy
Well, the only problem I've runned into while using OpenOffice on my Ubuntu netbook is that the controls are slightly different from MS Office's ones. And sometimes there is a problem with printing documents - they turn out as a mess, but mostly it happens with .odt files.
OpenOffice never crashed and always offered me to recover documents if my system crashed before saving. That's great as for me.
menino
In most corporations, MS office is used widely, and also for interoffice communications and more flexible and less-hassle document sharing.
For new users, and budget users, as well as startup companies, which are under tight budgets, I would suggest Openoffice to use, but if communicating with other companies and document sharing also with them, it would be advisable to use MS office.
I believe that Openoffice has the feature to save as ms office files, but for spreadsheet documents with complex calculations, this may not always work, although I do not know lately how it is.
A few years ago this problem happened, but at the moment, this issue may have been fixed (hopefully).
Once I get back from vacation, in about 2 weeks time, I intend to try out the new version of Openoffice and check its interoperability with MS documents to and from.
Ankhanu
chartcentral wrote:
Microsoft Office is still the premium office suite when it comes to features, user-friendliness and usability. OpenOffice.org is just the open-source and free alternative (but very good enough for your everyday basic use). Smile


Honestly, I haven't encountered an area where OpenOffice has fallen behind MSOffice in terms of features or usability.
However, I don't use OpenOffice. This is because MSOffice fails at opening and properly formatting OpenOffice files. MSOffice will read the files and, for the most part display them correctly, some things do not format properly. As my thesis advisers use MSOffice, they need to see my work properly formatted, I have to use MSOffice.

The real failing is with the Windows version of MSOffice specifically. The Mac version seems to have no problems reading OpenOffice files and OpenOffice has no issues reading MSOffice files from either Windows or Mac origin. The Windows version of MSOffice has issues formatting both Mac MSOffice files and OpenOffice files... Windows gotta step up their game! (I think there's a certain amount of intent on Microsoft's part here, really)
ankur209
Well,i would say Microsoft Office is best one as compared to Open Office in terms of using and interface.
Its because most of us had seen MS Office at many places but Open Office is not so widely used in Offices,Banks etc.

But when it comes to money price,Open Office leads beacuse its absolutely a freeware whereas MS Office is too costly. Crying or Very sad

But Piracy is making MS Office available to everyone and thus people are using it and finally this Office Product from Microsoft wins.... Razz
SultanMA
I think the most stable and best office suit is Microsoft office 7. yes It's not free like openoffice but it worth it's price.
marygrace
Of course I am more comfortable using or working with the microsoft office especially the microsoft word, excel, powerpoint. They are very important for my reports and presentations. word 2010 training
chartcentral
In terms of features and usability, Microsoft Office 2010 definitely has the advantage. So if you are willing to spend some cash to buy it, go for it as it shall be money spent wisely. It should already be stable enough.

Apache OpenOffice, on the other hand, is okay for basic use. But its drawback is the frustration it causes when you use it extensively. Sometimes it crashes, sometimes it reformats the document layout upon save, sometimes you can't will it to do what you want it to do (when it's easy enough to do it in MS Office).

It will also take some time to get accustomed to OpenOffice stuff like terms used and program layout, as well as in finding the equivalent features from its MS Office counterpart. But then, when you get used to this, it will no longer be a problem.

With all that being said, still, OpenOffice is definitely good enough for a product that's free. You may also want to check out LibreOffice. Haven't really used this but maybe this is less frustrating than the application it was forked from.
silverdown
I like MS Office 2010
Gregoric
Everything I need from such programs is given to me by - you could call it old - Microsoft's Office 2003. Only apps that I really need are Word and PowerPoint. Never used any other. Thus, that 2003 release with few patches giving support of 2007 and 2010 files is pretty enough for me.

If I don't need to produce something using these programs, when for example I have to send some text with proper formatting to friend, I use Google Docs. They provide all the basic functions, pretty and simple interface and handling. And - I can launch these Apps anywhere where Internet connection is provided. Even with my Opera Mini at mobile phone. I think online document editing will soon be only way to do this.
zimmer
SultanMA wrote:
I think the most stable and best office suit is Microsoft office 7. yes It's not free like openoffice but it worth it's price.


I agree.. Microsoft office 2010 is more better... you paid the price but you get what you expect and for me that matters..
Da Rossa
As of today, OpenOffice has never tied with Microsoft Office. Specially Office 14 (2010). It's so god, flexible and powerful. There may be a dispute about power of operating systems (Windows x Mac x Linux), but regarding Office Suites, then nothing compares to Microsoft Office 2010.
thanhcuong1990
I am using Office 2010, and I see many advantages in comparison with OpenOffice. Although OpenOffice is free, but there are too few people know about it.
Da Rossa
thanhcuong1990 wrote:
I am using Office 2010, and I see many advantages in comparison with OpenOffice. Although OpenOffice is free, but there are too few people know about it.


Talking of, I might be seen as an unpleasant person b the opensource community, but in this particular case of office suite apps, I trust Microsoft more than on the entire group of contributors of OpenOffice.

Paid apps may be good too. We have two examples: Microsoft Office over OpenOffice and Adobe Photoshop over GIMP.
pauline5765
I think Microsoft Office is better than OpenOffice. It's hard to use openoffice when you're already used to writing in Microsoft Office applications. Besides, people use microsoft office since what... 1990s? And it has dramtically improved since then,
sysna
I will prefer microsoft office a lot more than open office, open office doesn't have enough features for me to write down my documents which contain draws, shapes, tables, equations , ...
RosenCruz
I still use Office 2003 and I m damn satisfied. Wink
sysna
Open office is a real good office suite, it was the only solution for linux users for many years till libreoffice came to life but open office is not as good as microsoft office neither libreoffice is. i'm using microsoft office for many years now and trying to change my office suite is a hard work and also open office doesn't have features of microsoft office.
firstroad
to simply answer you...
*Microsoft office is the best
*OpenOffice is an alternative
*Google Docs will do the job

And let's get to the details:
*Microsoft office is the best office ever created... even apple hadn't create an office suite till 2003 i think because there was noway to create something equal to it...
*OpenOffice is a free solution but there are a lot of problems with it...also ms office can easily handle openOffice files but it doesn't work vice verca
*Google docs is what i am working with the last weeks, there are no problems... also you don't have to save, it saves everything you do every second, its oly drawback is that because it's a web application, it hasn't got as many features as an normal office but i am pretty sure google is working on it. and it's huge positive is that you can access it from everywhere with the security and reliabilty of google
reg2009
microsoft ofcourse
reg2009
but openoffice portable usefull more
Pande
Neither,

Google Docs all the way.
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