This is a read-only archive. Find the latest Linux articles, documentation, and answers at the new Linux.com!

Linux.com

Feature: Office Software

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

By Federico Kereki on December 04, 2008 (8:00:00 PM)

Share    Print    Comments   

If you run Ubuntu, openSUSE, Debian, or Mandriva, among other distributions, then whenever you run OpenOffice.org you don't run the "official" version, but rather Go-OO, an office suite based on the OpenOffice.org source code. Go-OO includes enhancements and functions that haven't been accepted by Sun, and that may never be, because of licensing, business, or other reasons.

Sun, the major contributor to OpenOffice.org, applies its own set of rules on the project's development, licensing, and copyrights, and as a result, there are often clashes with the general open source community. (Read this interview with an OpenOffice.org developer for more inside info on the Go-OO/OpenOffice.org rift.) Novell is the main mover behind Go-OO, but Debian and Ubuntu developers are also cooperating by maintaining a large group of patches, and making sure they don't break newer OpenOffice.org releases. There used to be a certain lag between Go-OO releases and OpenOffice.org's, but now both variants come out quite close.

Thus, if you install OpenOffice.org in Ubuntu 8.10, though the package is named "OpenOffice.org Office Suite," if you check the package description, at the bottom it reads "Homepage: http://www.go-oo.org," showing its true source.

Go-OO is available both for Linux and Windows. If your distribution doesn't appear to carry it in a repository, you can download the version you need and install it yourself, though before installing Go-OO, you might need to remove your current OpenOffice.org installation.

Among the latest features included with Go-OO you can find:

  • Better graphics capabilities than OOo provides; you can import SVG and WPG graphics and EMF files.
  • 3-D transitions for presentations.
  • A solver for spreadsheets that can find the value of a cell, satisfying arbitrary constraints. OpenOffice.org now has its own, but the one in Go-OO appeared first and has quite a story of its own, showing disagreements between Sun and independent developers.
  • Better integration with Microsoft Office, including VBA macro support and support for Office 2007 OpenXML file formats, and Microsoft Works.

However, what most people notice is Go-OO's greater speed, including shorter startup and faster response times. The application's memory footprint is also smaller.

If you've been using Go-OO without realizing it, you probably have no need to change to the latest OpenOffice.org version. But if you have only used the "official" OOo version, trying Go-OO might pay in increased speed and added functionality.

Federico Kereki is an Uruguayan systems engineer with more than 20 years' experience developing systems, doing consulting work, and teaching at universities.

Share    Print    Comments   

Comments

on Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Note: Comments are owned by the poster. We are not responsible for their content.

Is there mono code being sneaked in?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 94.189.222.245] on December 04, 2008 08:59 PM
Since it's Novell behind this move, I wonder if this is really an improvement or an attempt to get mono code integrated into OO.o
If so, no one with a functioning brain is wise to touch it. I don't have much respect for Sun, but even less for the games Novell is playing on MS' behalf.

#

Re: Is there mono code being sneaked in?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 82.54.182.158] on December 04, 2008 09:44 PM
It certainly looks fishy.. "Better, faster, *freer*"? Come on...

#

Re: Is there mono code being sneaked in?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 68.54.137.186] on December 04, 2008 10:27 PM
"Is there mono code being sne..." blah blah blahbiddy blah blah blah. Get over it.

#

Re(1): Is there mono code being sneaked in?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 75.51.86.137] on December 06, 2008 12:52 AM
Yeah, don't worry about MS. That's a fantastic strategy jackass.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 193.166.94.185] on December 04, 2008 10:29 PM
"However, what most people notice is Go-OO's greater speed, including shorter startup and faster response times."

ArchLinux has openoffice version 300m9 (Build:9358) and Debian has the exact same version in their experimental repo. To my best knowledge, ArchLinux uses the Sun version of openoffice, while Debian has the Go-OO version. I happen to have both distros installed on a computer with Intel dual-core 2.00GHz CPU, so I thought I could test the startup times on these two systems. On ArchLinux openoffice writer took 6 seconds to start, while in Debian it took 9 seconds. So, according to my experience, Go-OO is not quite as good as it claims to be. It's considerably slower to start than the Sun version. (However, I don't know if ArchLinux has added any patches to speed up the startup time.)

The advantage I see in the Debian version (Go-OO) over the ArchLinux version (from Sun) is that in Debian I can install just the writer component while in ArchLinux I need to install the whole openoffice suite, even though I just need the writer. Also, Debian has skin packages that make openoffice look good in GNOME or KDE while in ArchLinux I haven't found similar skin packages.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 151.188.247.104] on December 05, 2008 01:53 AM
"The advantage I see in the Debian version (Go-OO) over the ArchLinux version (from Sun) is that in Debian I can install just the writer component while in ArchLinux I need to install the whole openoffice suite, even though I just need the writer."

Actually, that's not really true. Unlike MS Office, OpenOffice.org's core is really one monolithic application that handles documents, spreadsheets, and presentations (maybe Base as well, but I haven't played with that very much). That's why you've always been able to open a spreadsheet or presentation from within OO.o writer, from even the first versions back in 2003. It's *one* app, not several, much like the Mozilla Suite or Konqueror. When you call "swriter", you're really calling "soffice" with the "writer" profile.

That's also, BTW, why OO.o takes a bit longer to start than MS Office (well, along with MS's pre-caching of MS Office components at boot-time). You're not starting just one "application". You're essentially starting the entire office suite. This further explains a good deal of OO.o's larger DRAM usage.

Now, as for Novell...while I certainly do not trust Novell anymore, I can see the need for the support of MS Office 2007 documents. So, for those in countries that haven't accepted the ridiculous notion of software patents, I say, download and use the Go-OO version to your heart's content. Home users, same thing. Businesses are already pretty much rejecting MS Office 2007 for a plethora of reasons (along with Vista, hence the "Windows 7" hype), and the StarOffice version will continue to serve them well.

--SYG

#

Re(1): Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 66.230.230.230] on December 05, 2008 03:48 AM
"Actually, that's not really true."

No. It's true, really. In Microsoft Windows Sun offers an OpenOffice.org installer where you can choose which components you want to install. You don't need to install the whole OpenOffice.org suite.

But in Linux the official Sun version forces you to install the whole OpenOffice.org suite -- you can't just pick the components you want. Go-OO makes it possible to only install only the components you really want and nothing else. If you want to install only the writer component in Go-OO, you can do it without installing the spreadsheet or the presentation component.

That's a rather good reason to choose Go-OO instead of the official Sun version in Linux.

#

Re(2): Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Dummy00001 on December 06, 2008 07:02 PM
Next time installing OO.o on Windows, please try selecting different options and check how the required disk space changes. You would notice that there is a ~100MB blob always installed - and that's OO.o core. Not installing Calc or Writer will simply not install their specific files (e.g. templates) and their icons. Still, all the functionality of OO.o is always present for simple reason that e.g. Calc can contain Writer document and vice versa.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 213.208.123.138] on December 05, 2008 09:51 AM
Last I looked ArchLinux uses the go-oo version :-)

#

Re(1): Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 193.166.94.185] on December 05, 2008 04:09 PM
"Last I looked ArchLinux uses the go-oo version :-)"

Hmm... I can't seem to be able to open the sample MS-Works file from the Go-OO web site in ArchLinux's version of openoffice. Debian's version of openoffice has no trouble opening that same sample file.

Are you absolutely sure that ArchLinux uses the Go-OO version?

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 87.82.26.165] on December 07, 2008 04:41 PM
Testing Sun OOo on one distro against Go-OO OOo (too many O's) on a different distro - even on the same hardware - may not be a reasonable test. Different distros may have different sets of services and daemons running. A better test would be the differing versions of OOo on the same machine with the same distro, cold and warm starts on the same user.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 70.45.205.67] on December 19, 2008 12:50 AM
how about testing in the same environment.

You might have things in the back in one OS that you don't have in the other...

Download and test in the same distribution

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 71.136.225.18] on December 05, 2008 02:12 AM
No OS X build, which is what one would expect from a company that licenses patents for FOSS from Microsoft.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Dummy00001 on December 06, 2008 09:34 PM
And what OS X support has to do with Linux oriented product??

Apple never reacted on ODF support requests and they are apparently busy licensing M$Office support for their iWork themselves.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 87.82.26.165] on December 07, 2008 04:43 PM
"No OS X build, which is what one would expect from a company that licenses patents for FOSS from Microsoft. "

Or, more accurately, because they've just not done them yet. There are OOo versions for OSX that are based on Go-OO and a native Go-OO OSX build is planned.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 211.24.237.3] on December 05, 2008 02:47 AM
I have been installing and using go-oo for God know how long ever since I switched to Ubuntu and prior to that on SLED and OpenSUSE. Generally I don't find any difference between the stock OO.o and go-oo except when I work with MS Office documents; go-oo seems to be more capable. Also, Sun borked the Quckstarter on Linux. If it was not for the go-oo folks, it would not have worked.

For those of you who don't trust Novell any more because of the MS deal, you will have to start living in the real world. Deals are made everyday between companies, also, what is so bad about Mono and Silverlight? Are they not open sourced? MS is the biggest software company in the world and like it or not, Free and Open Source stuff need to work with MS products before it can even get noticed by Microsoft-hardened people. Amiga is a great OS, but where is it now? Don't hate the idea/concept/framework just because it came from a proprietary company. Man, I don't see so much objection even when Java was closed source by Sun. Good ideas do come from both ends of the spectrum.

Call it what you want, dealing/dancing/sleeping with the devil; fact is MS rules in most companies. Free and Open Source software must work in tandem with them. So shall we bad mouth Samba next?

The "actual" world runs heterogeneous systems, there is not one company (except possibly the vendors themselves) that runs everything on a single platform.

So if anyone don't trust Novell just because they pressed flesh and inked some agreement with the MS, get over it man. Don't be a zealot for the sake of being a zealot. If you are afraid that go-oo might "sneak" in some proprietary stuff, get hold of the code and read/audit it. Don't just say something, do something!

By the way, I do not work for Novell or get paid by them and am neither a fanboy of OpenSUSE. I am just upset that so much inaccurate accusations have been levelled at a company that has contributed a lot to the Open Source world.

If you need to know, I use Fedora/RHEL/Centos and Ubuntu. OpenSUSE doesn't feature in any of my computer.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 190.79.40.125] on December 05, 2008 03:30 AM
"also, what is so bad about Mono and Silverlight? Are they not open sourced?"

No, Silverlight is not open source... Mono is open source, but without the protection deal between MS and Novell, it's nothing but virus-ware... microsoft can sue all non-novell Mono users anytime for the MS patents they are reimplementing... that's what's so bad

OTOH, Sun is not only the major contributor to OOo (as this pro-novell site states), but the company that released it as Open Source Software, for all to use... what would Go-oo mean without Sun and OOo???... instead, clowns like michael meeks and others insist on attacking and trying to destroy Sun's and OOo reputation spreading unfair FUD about everything they can... why can't you just offer Go-oo without attacking OOo???? when you do that, the only winner will be Microsoft... it isn't so hard to see what novell is trying to do

#

Re(1): Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.48.80.207] on December 05, 2008 03:16 PM
If MS is to go after Mono users it will be committing PR suicide, besides they have no right to sue others, read http://www.mono-project.com/FAQ:_Licensing. And yes you are right Silverlight is not Open Sourced, Moonlight is. AFAIK IBM and Sun also holds many patents. Many big companies collect patents and I was at a talk by SImon Phipps of Sun who said companies accumulate patents (by buy or resgistering them) all the time. This is done so that no single company can "out gun" the other; sort of like MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) during the Cold War.

While it is true that Sun released OO.o and we in the Open Source community powe them much for it, do note that some of the assertions (http://derstandard.at/?url=/?id=1216917892794%26_artikelIndex=1) by Meeks & Co are valid. Why wouldn't they accept some of the improvements and patches? Did you know what triggered the go-oo split? Have at look at this, Sun Refuses LGPL for OpenOffice; Novell forks (http://slashdot.org/articles/07/10/03/1212234.shtml)

Attacking one another seems to be the norm in the Open Source world. KDE vs GNOME, vi vs emacs etc. Don't you already know that? Following your argument, all these attacks must be also be sponsored by MS correct? Don't blame others. The Open Source and Free Software world are peppered with opiniated and sometimes infantile people. Mr. OpenBSD himself, Theo de Raadt is an example.

The Free and Open Source worlds did not lose battles because of some nefarious schemes by MS or anyone. We did it to ourselves. If you are a total noob, how would you judge a bunch of guys who argues even on something as "trivial" as editors? I feel that go-oo is more open compared to OO.o from Sun. Yeah Sun has a bunch of forums and wikis and stuff, but where are the people? They don't seem to be engaging with the community. By the way, what is the escalation and security procedures for OO,o?

At least we can say that go-oo is a "work in progress". Sun's OO.o should have been a work done right?

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Re(2): Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 190.79.40.125] on December 13, 2008 05:33 PM
@Eric

"If MS is to go after Mono users it will be committing PR suicide, besides they have no right to sue others, read http://www.mono-project.com/FAQ:_Licensing. And yes you are right Silverlight is not Open Sourced, Moonlight is. AFAIK IBM and Sun also holds many patents. Many big companies collect patents and I was at a talk by SImon Phipps of Sun who said companies accumulate patents (by buy or resgistering them) all the time. This is done so that no single company can "out gun" the other; sort of like MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) during the Cold War."

Problem is, unlike Sun, IBM and others big players, MS has already threatened FOSS user by stating that their patents are being violated.

That is a precedent, and no one wants that to continue. The message is avoid MS IP at all cost.

"While it is true that Sun released OO.o and we in the Open Source community powe them much for it, do note that some of the assertions (http://derstandard.at/?url=/?id=1216917892794%26_artikelIndex=1) by Meeks & Co are valid. Why wouldn't they accept some of the improvements and patches? Did you know what triggered the go-oo split? Have at look at this, Sun Refuses LGPL for OpenOffice; Novell forks (http://slashdot.org/articles/07/10/03/1212234.shtml)"

While it is open source, rights must be assigned to an entity for it to be able to defend something. In the case that openoffice.org gets attacked by somebody, like MS, Sun CAN react and defend it with it's own portfolio. Otherwise, the lone creator of the infringing code is up against the possible demands. This is something that happens all the time... you also need to assign your rights to other bodies in the linux kernel development (FSF) and even on Go-oo (novell)... there's nothing wrong with that and if Meeks and the rest from novell don't want to assign their rights to Sun, they are free to do whatever they want... but they have no right to attack Sun and OO.o because they don't agree to it.

Novell's dubious deal with MS is what set the alerts on everything they do. Sun has been very pro-OSS since a long time ago and Novell people insist on attacking them, without taking care of their own problems first... that doesn't seem right.

"Attacking one another seems to be the norm in the Open Source world. KDE vs GNOME, vi vs emacs etc. Don't you already know that? Following your argument, all these attacks must be also be sponsored by MS correct? Don't blame others. The Open Source and Free Software world are peppered with opiniated and sometimes infantile people. Mr. OpenBSD himself, Theo de Raadt is an example."

Incorrect. I don't know what you smoke there, but you should share some...

What has Novell/MS to do in anything you mentioned there?

"The Free and Open Source worlds did not lose battles because of some nefarious schemes by MS or anyone. We did it to ourselves. If you are a total noob, how would you judge a bunch of guys who argues even on something as "trivial" as editors? I feel that go-oo is more open compared to OO.o from Sun."

FOSS has not lost battles, it is because there are different options that FOSS IS winning. If you are a total noob that doesn't see that, that is your business, not mine.

I'm not judging anyone, I'm just pointing out that this article sucks and is just FUD propaganda.

Again, if you feel that Go-oo is more open, that is your business... just remember that there wouldn't be Go-oo without OO.o... so, I think OO.o is pretty open...

Goodbye

Victor

#

The Fastest OpenOffice.org Edition

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 79.21.134.2] on December 05, 2008 03:04 AM
OpenOffice.org comes in several editions produced by different groups. Each edition has its own features, performance improvements, bug fixes, and new bugs. Go-oo in particular boasts performance as a feature with its the slogan, "Better, Faster, Freer," but is there truth in advertising?

http://www.oooninja.com/2008/09/fastest-openofficeorg-edition-benchmark.html

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 92.195.222.132] on December 05, 2008 09:09 AM
> support for Office 2007 OpenXML file formats

What OO.org 3.0 includes as well but compared to the go-oo fork that support does not depend on mono (huge dependency for a xslt-filter) on is MUCH faster.

Novell should start to cooperate.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 213.208.123.138] on December 05, 2008 09:53 AM
The go-oo version has the same native OpenXML import code that Sun is shipping - and Novell co-operated with Sun to develop that; what are you smoking ? :-)

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 82.181.89.201] on December 05, 2008 10:28 AM
> mono (huge dependency for a xslt-filter)

This refers to odf-converter, the Microsoft sponsored, Open Source OOXML<->ODF converter. (See odf-converter.sourceforge.net. It really is Open Source, but the people/companies workng on it are pretty clueless about normal Open Source conventions)

That is a separate piece of software. It is written in C# and a shitload of XSL, so this is indeed where Mono comes in, as odf-converter when running on Linux obviously uses Mono, and in fact also the Novell build of odf-converter for OOo use on Windows uses Mono.

The relation of odf-converter to OOo is that the go-oo -based OOo builds can use an OOo extension that transparently runs odf-converter as a pre- and postprocessor when loading and saving OOXML documents. But it is still a separate optional package. (Available at least for SUSE and the Novell Edition of OOo on Windows.)

Don't confuse odf-converter with the built-in OOXML reading and saving code in OOo that Novell and Sun are working on. They have nothing in common. The built-in OOXML code is all C++ like the rest of the core of OOo.

#

Neo-Office based on go-oo too ...

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 213.208.123.138] on December 05, 2008 11:11 AM
FYI, the other variant - neo-office is also based on go-oo, and they contribute code back to ooo-build.

#

Poison formats can be avoided by avoiding Go-oo

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 84.251.129.228] on December 05, 2008 12:14 PM
Presenting this package as a viable substitute for OpenOffice.org is mean and malicious. It carries several poison pills that ultimately reduce the freedom and flexibility that draws people to the Internet in the first place.

The first, and most severe, problem is the inclusion of MS new encumbered format. That simply encourages the spread of a technically defective, undocumented, legally uncertain format. Let it die. It's a bad thing to continue spreading *new* proprietary formats. The effort needs to be on open formats, and that can be done by continuing the lead that the universal office format OpenDocument has gained.

The second, is that VBA is a liability both security-wise, performace-wise. Why hang on to EOL'd legacy scripting when you can use OpenOffice.org to script in bog-standard Javascript and Python. Better yet, there are staffing liabilities in retaining the VBA monkeys. Any company with a web presence is going to already have javascript experts and maybe also python experts. Consolidation of skills and technologies. At the same time the unproductive, VBA / MS, employees can be culled.

Sharpen your act up linux.com editors and turn the focus back to open source and open standards. I'm not sure where this tsunami of M$ boosters is coming from, but ditch it PDQ.

#

Re: Poison formats can be avoided by avoiding Go-oo

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.48.80.207] on December 05, 2008 03:36 PM
Avoiding "poison" formats? Man you must not work in the "real" world. As much as I dislike (hate is too strong of a word) MS Office document formats, I must still use it and work with it. Using OO.o, particularly the go-oo or OxygenOffice variant, allows me to do so without resorting to buying the bloated and over-priced MS Office.

VBA is also a necessary evil. I know about the security fears around it, but the fact is, there are many spreasheets out there with customised macros. You are not going to win people over just by technical or philosophical arguments, if the finance people can't do their jobs, any arguments no matter how pursuasive and logical will be doomed to failure. After all, you still want them to process your pay cheques and claims right?

Weaning them off VBA must be a gradual process. One way is to first move them off MS Office and then teach them StarBasic/OOoBasic.

Interoperability is truly a dirty word. On one hand I know of people who really want to move to OO.o but can't do so because of stuff like file mangled formatting in documents and VBA macros and OTOH we have the Open Source and Free Software "crusaders" who are just unaware or don't care of the challenges involved.

I for one feel that there is no reason to blast Linux.com editors for allowing this piece up.

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Re(1): Poison formats can be avoided by avoiding Go-oo

Posted by: JJMacey on December 05, 2008 11:02 PM
Eric,

I'm going from openSuSE 11.0 to Fedora 10. How do I make sure that I get Go-oo? I do love mixing thnigs up, and staying on the "cutting edge".

#

Re(2): Poison formats can be avoided by avoiding Go-oo

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.50.113.104] on December 06, 2008 10:20 AM
Hi JJMacey,

Please refer to instruction for Universal Linux at http://go-oo.org/download/

Or you can refer to http://slayachronicles.blogspot.com/2008/11/installing-go-oo-variant-of.html

if you run into problems you can refer to http://slayachronicles.blogspot.com/2008/12/problems-with-installing-go-oo-and-java.html

Cheers,

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Re: Poison formats can be avoided by avoiding Go-oo

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 190.135.28.227] on December 06, 2008 01:16 PM
What do you do if you need open a MS Windows docx file? Just quit? Refuse to work any more? Try to make everybody else change to OpenOffice? And if a Excel file needs VBA, you just ignore it? Use it even if it doesn't work?

Refusing to recognize that MS Office exists and that you need compatibility with it is wishful thinking, or plain just short sighted.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 155.136.80.81] on December 05, 2008 12:32 PM
The go-ooo fork of OpenOffice.org is very much a bleeding edge developers' version, which has not been through the full QA process run by the OpenOffice.org folks. Reporting go-ooo bugs is a good way of winding up people on the genuine OpenOffice.org support forums :-)

As has been stated above, open-source purists might also worry about go-ooo's origins in Novell, with their close links to Microsoft (and getting closer every day).

I'm amazed why so many otherwise sane distros continue to ship go-ooo in preference to genuine OpenOffice.org.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.48.80.207] on December 05, 2008 03:42 PM
"I'm amazed why so many otherwise sane distros continue to ship go-ooo in preference to genuine OpenOffice.org."

Reason, they still want their distros to be usable. The OO.o from Sun is good, I was using it for some time on my Fedora machines, until I found out about go-oo and have it to installed. Unless you work in an environment or live in a world that uses 100% Free and Open Sourced formats and standards, chances are you will have to deal with proprietary stuff and in this aspect, go-oo works better than stock Sun OO.o.

By the way, if go-oo is by any way tainted, Debian would not have used it as their default OO.o source.

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Debian made a mistake

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 84.251.129.228] on December 05, 2008 07:34 PM
Debian simply made a mistake. The team has been under concerted attack, in part because it is the foundation to many other distros, including the most popular Ubuntu series. By screwing with Debian, MS is able to throw stones in the machinery for many others.

It might possible that Debian has made a cleaned version of Goo, but unlikely. To play it safe, Goo needs to be purged from the distro and work put in on the real free software version found here:

http://www.openoffice.org/

#

Re: Debian made a mistake

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.50.113.104] on December 06, 2008 10:12 AM
Don't assume, why don't you go into the Debian devel channel and ask whether they have integrated "unclean" code into their beloved distro? Of course do it nicely and politely else you will be flamed till kingdom come. I love Debian and I use it; although it is "antiquated" by today's whizz-bang distros' standards, because they stay clear of "tainted" and patented stuff.

Why are you so pissed with go-oo? It ate your cat or something? Or is it just fun to hop onto the "Let's diss go-oo and Novell" bandwagon? Seen the code yet? Which part of it is tainted? Don't just say something, prove it! Oh yeah, have you tried filing a bug report and communicated with the developers of the Sun OO.o project? Any response? Any luck?

Brave words from someone who is assuming "Anonymous".

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 59.183.18.35] on December 05, 2008 07:54 PM
Most desktop users/developers probably dont need to worry AT ALL about Mono infringing MS patents because the US Patents system is going to be overhauled soon (or already in the process, last heard)
If you're that scared, just use Java and a Java-.Net bridge
If you arent likely to face patent litigation from MS - say you live outside US and your country barely recognises patents and "IP" crap, just go ahead and use Mono.
Mono is a port of .Net to Linux without M$ proprietary crap that needs you to use Windoze.
And its good to note that .Net is rip-off off Java. And that C# is an ECMA specification - so in your country, it'll be safe from any IP litigation, unless M$ hires or bribes your country's Chief Justice or someone like that - difficult.
Individual developers, go right ahead with Mono if you cant use Java.
It works pretty well. FWIW, there is dotGNU - which is a last resort .Net port.
In such a situation, Mono is pretty much perfect for Linux, patents to the dogs.
Make merry, do not spend emotion on the worrisome aspect of patents till you get v1.0 of your project running. Migrating to Java or another will be easy. Meanwhile, Senor Miguel's team has made it damn fricking easy to jump from .Net to Linux. Use the feature given to you. It is *meant* to help. I've spent many moons pondering the patent problem and havent really gained much. Writing code in Mono and then moving to Java also would be a shorter and stress-free path. Use that path. Words of wisdom from experience.
Make merry!

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 72.237.174.94] on December 05, 2008 09:04 PM
I don't generally defend Novell, but I wonder why all the conspiracy theorists have no issue with Sun's copyright assignment requirements that enable it to dual-license the OOo code? I wonder why nobody is digging into Sun's angle on this? Why only Novell? I'm sure we could invent some glorious conspiracy theories there. Like what happens when the sinking ship that is Sun Microsystems gets bought out by god-knows-who and the copyrights for all the OOo code gets new management.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 60.50.113.104] on December 06, 2008 09:59 AM
True. People seem to lean down hard on Novell because it is a low-hanging fruit; it's an easy target because they decided to make a deal and be cosy with MS. I don't see a conspiracy theory, I see a lot of people criticising Novell and go-oo without auditing the code because they know quite possibly they will be proven wrong. People can be so very brave and dissing others when they are "Anonymous".

So people, if you really think is hiding something. Go and audit the codes, justify your claims. If not just be quiet.

- Eric Yeoh -

#

People come down hard on Novell because it is violating the spirit of Free and Open Source Software

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 192.89.123.41] on December 06, 2008 03:54 PM
No. Don't be stupid. People come down hard on Novell because it is violating the spirit of Free and Open Source Software

http://news.cnet.com/Open-source-leader-leaving-Novell-for-Google/2100-7344_3-6145615.html

To add insult to injury it also appears to be working hard to inject inferior quality technologies (i.e. .NET/C# vs Java). In contrast, Java gives better performance and is much more mature. Java is also cross-platform and has several orders of magnitude more acceptance.

Tainted code (i.e. Gooo) is everybody's waste of time. Having to audit the code of every random loser would be denial of service. That an additional example of wasting community time. The onus is on the contributor to provide that the source is clean.

#

Re: People come down hard on Novell because it is violating the spirit of Free and Open Source Softw

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 121.120.168.33] on December 06, 2008 05:16 PM
I have tremendous respect for Mr. Allison and the great works he has done on Samba. It was speculated that it was odd that he get a job right after leaving Novell; however staff movement is normal in the IT industry and I will not want to wildly speculate what really happened.

However, if you insist that the code is tainted, it will be wise to take a look yourself and point out where the offensive portions are; else you will be no better than SCO.

It is fine if you think that go-oo is inferior and if you have moral objections to it, but it will be wise not to criticise the hard work of others (the devels are not only from from Novell if you didn't already know) and call the product a "loser".

Funny that you mentioned Java; while the majority of it is open sourced there are some "tainted" stuff in it too. So, are you practising selective flaming? By following your arguments, Java should also be discarded, hissed at and be avoided like the plague right? OpenJDK and IcedTea are good alternatives and while they seemed to have passed some compatibility tests, in practise they are not as complete/compatible as Sun's JDK.

Sun makes great stuff and so does Novell. Both companies have proprietary stuff and have inked deals with MS. Both company are working on the same product. Difference is, all the nice bits (an this was one of the reasons why go-oo was formed) goes into StarOffice while you can download most of stock OO.o + StarOffice goodies via go-oo. Why is the report generator missing in OO.o 3x while available in StarOffice? Yeah, most of go-oo also goes into Novell's OO.o, but hey, nobody sees any problem with Sun trying to make a buck with StarOffice right?

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.253.65.93] on December 06, 2008 05:46 PM
This is retarded. If you want to help with performance issues, you can do so for OOo, it's open source, you don't need to fork it.

If some company wants to provide an add-on/plugin for OOo that allows reading and/or writing to controlled formats which are not open standards and that you should avoid using *when possible* and try to get your businesses to switch off of them, so be it, but not everyone has to install that plugin, because, it's a plugin, and can be easily removed or installed.

If Novell or Microsoft or other companies think they can develop a completely different version, go ahead, but LABEL IT AS SUCH in all distros and make it clear that it's NOT the official OOo version. Their plan is simple and anyone having any kind of IT brain knows what they are doing. Microsoft wants to compete with open source, so since they can't beat them, their solution is to join them, to embrase, extend, and extinguish them. These are some of the ways they are doing it:

1) Fuzz the lines, like in this case, where it's not clear what version of a program you have so they can sneak things in.

2) Push support for their own controlled software into other developer's and company's software, thus starting to be able to attach strings to it and control it.

3) If they can't push code into the main version, or fuzz the lines, fork it completely and try to make it be better than the competitor's software. By this point, it's mostly pointless though for Microsoft, because then they'd be competing against their own Office program, however they still want to "ride the wave" of open source business. Eventually, this is where Microsoft, if they are smart, will end up, is turning themselves into an open source company.

What Microsoft wants, and all businesses want, is control. They will try to gain control in any way they can. Microsoft is extremely good about legal control. So licensing, patents, copyright laws, any and all the tools they can possibly use to throw at "open source software" to control it they will do, just like other companies do, I'm not just picking on Microsoft, and it's not picking, because they ARE to blame for a lot and they use lots of dirty business tactics to control others. They have a history of this, you should read up on it.

Anyone who is so stupid and gullible enough to sit back and think that Microsoft loves you and has your intentions at heart will continue to get used and abused. Those who choose to use software that has strings attached to it will get fucked somehow, so ***if you fully understand those strings and what it means and are OK with getting fucked in that way***, that's fine, but you should respect others who don't want to get fucked.

Let me give a demonstration of fuckage that may be OK, then one example of bad fuckage:

1) Art (software), which is controlled by the artist (programmer), and they require payment for their creation for others to use it. It's possible to take what should be fair use to extremes, but ultimately if a developer chooses to make something for money, I think that to some degree, OK, fine, I'll pay you for it, if I want to. Many gamers out there have no problem paying for some games, so be it. Now, on the flip side of this you have to realize that ultimately it is getting fucked to a degree because a) you can't do whatever you want with it, b) the support for it will eventually run out and as soon as it does you may be left high and dry, c) ultimately it's a dead-end road, you're paying to get off a few times but that's it, it's just instant gratification and isn't *investing* in anything. So, if you want some instant gratification, so be it, but also realize the flip side of that, that if you could (which you can to varying degrees) contribute (time, brainpower, money, etc) to an open source software project instead, that investment will never go away, it will continue. Of course, no one is happy with things just continuing, in art and entertainment you always need something new, so it needs to continue. Ultimately I hope that one day Blender and other open source game, movies, and art creation tools will be good enough so users can easily create and share their art/expressions. That will go a long way to solving all of this.

2) Very bad: You use some codec or other patented format, it being "free" as in beer at the time (ahem *MP3*), and think no harm can come of it. Popularizing and relying heavily on this codec, however, in the long run, ends up biting your tail because patent lawsuits finally get flexed, and royalties are collected.

Again, Microsoft knows all this, they have said it many times, they will be "back to collect" at a later date. That's why developers don't want to have anything to do with them. So YOU get over it. If developers don't want to get fucked, gee, how horrible of them, what zealots, hahaha, they're stupid! No, they're fucking smart, but if you want to get fucked go ahead, no one is stopping you, just don't cry about it when it happens when they told you so. If some users prefer not to use any closed, proprietary, or in any way controlled software on their computer, they have every right to. This is another part of Microsoft's tactic, get everyone to laugh at anyone who doesn't use their controlled software.

Let me give one last example of fuckage from proprietary software. If you bought certain MMORPGs (ahem Tabula Rasa) that later went offline, you're screwed. You paid $50 for a game that was completely dependent on some servers somewhere across the net, so it was a big risk buying that software, but you did it any way. Suffer the consequences I guess.

-Yfrwlf

P.S. I buy closed source, proprietary software, but I understand my actions and the consequence when I do it. I wish there were better monetary ways set up for paying for the development of open source software.

#

Re: Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 121.120.235.59] on December 07, 2008 03:55 AM
Your arguments are sound and if you feel so strongly about it, that is fine. I have no love for MS; I was an Exchange admin for some time and I know how they eventually end up playing out everyone. So I don't miss that even a little, now that I have moved to Linux at home and work.

You are also correct that the go-oo folks should properly label their stuff and not just as OO.o, and if they decide to fork at the least they can rename the packages better.

Well the general sentiment of the anti-go-oo and anti-Novell is, it is bad because they have some relationship with MS. I can see why, given MS' tactics. Take out mono, don't use it if you dislike it so much. Use python, perl etc, the choices are endless.

But if anyone (i.e. myself) prefers go-oo over the stock OO.o then that person is stupid? Wow. The Open Source and Free Software communities at their best. By all means choose, but if you choose something we don't agree or like then you are dumb, stupid and insect! Is name calling a pre-requisite to join the Open Source crowd? I am sure given the amount of collective intelligence of the community, name calling should have been confined to the days when we required nappy change.

So, far nobody has attempted to prove that the go-oo code is not open sourced or contained anything closed (or tainted) in anyway. Great rhetorics by the "anti" crowd, but where is the smoking gun? Where does it say that the code comes from MS? Have you gone through the go-oo code and ran a diff against stock OO.o code? Or is that too much of an effort and it is simply easier to diss it in forums and such? Samba supports SMB and that's what MS runs their file/folder shares with. Abiword and Gnumeric respectively supports the proprietary doc and xls formats too. Should we dump them as well and call the fine people of those communities dumb and useless and MS lackeys?

Supporting proprietary formats is not something I would agree to but it is a necessary evil. I need to send and receive files with my clients in MS Office formats. Do I like it? NO. Do I wish that they will move to ODF? YES. Do I wish to get fired because of my insistence on ODF? NO. I like go-oo because it works better with MS Office documents. It is nothing religious. Free and Open Source software does not exists in an exclusive bubble. They need to work with proprietary stuff to stay relevant and in order to do so, they will have to support proprietary data formats. I too agree that over dependence on proprietary formats is bad, but until I can find a media player that supports OGG and people dump all their MS Office suites en mass, I will have to work with stuff like MP3s and MS Office documents.

I did attempt to write to people like Apple, San and Creative on supporting OGG. As usual no replies.

Don't agree with me if you must, that's fine, but any sort of argument regardless of how sound it is will lose its merits once foul language is used.

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Just delete Mono :-)

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.229.215.83] on December 07, 2008 01:16 AM
The first thing I do when installing Ubuntu on any computer is to go to Synaptic and delete Mono. Nothing could be simpler. This also has the benefit of automatically deleting two minor programs that are dependent on Mono. I consider this automatic deletion to be a helpful feature - I would, of course, never use such programs anyway.

The computer then feels cleaner. It is like breathing fresh air.

You know you should.

This keeps Mono from ever sneaking up on you from even from places you would never expect.

You know how Miguel is.

I have been using the Ubuntu version of OpenOffice.org for some time without ever knowing that it was not the pure, unadulterated, pastuerized OpenOffice.org. This article and the many useful comments following have been quite the eye opener for me. Thank you, Federico Kereki.

Is that Irish?

I have used OpenOfficeorg. for some time (years) in this manner (Mono-depleted) for interoperability with the Microsoft Office crowd, and have thus far not run into any problems. And I have tested and I have asked.

Just delete Mono.

Make the world a better place.


Best regards,

Epaminondas

#

Re: Just delete Mono :-)

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 121.120.235.59] on December 07, 2008 04:10 AM
Yeah take out Mono if you hate it so much. By the way have you seen or studied the .Net architecture?

I find it to be sound if THERE ARE WERE NOT TIE INS to MS stuff. I find it easier to understand compared to J2EE, but that is just me. By the way, is J2EE open sourced?

Don't hate something because it comes from a villain. Sad to say, much of today's medical know hows came from the cruel experimentations performed by the Nazis. Or do you know that space exploration would have taken decades longer without Nazi scientists? Should we scrap NASA then?

The knowledge itself is not evil, it's how you use it that matters. If you feel that Mono is like a disease waiting to consume you, hey man do what you want. That's your freedom of choice.

I much prefer Python, Java and Perl, but I will never ever call other people moronic just because they like ASP or any other MS language. Doing so will run contrary to the idea of providing choice to people.

- Eric Yeoh -

#

Re(1): Just delete Mono :-)

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 84.250.7.43] on December 07, 2008 06:48 PM
"Don't hate something because it comes from a villain. Sad to say, much of today's medical know hows came from the cruel experimentations performed by the Nazis. Or do you know that space exploration would have taken decades longer without Nazi scientists? Should we scrap NASA then?"

The comparison with the Nazi know-how is silly. The Nazis you refer to ceased to exist long time ago, so you can't advance their cause by using skills and technology they developed.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 70.146.128.238] on December 07, 2008 03:35 AM
See, this is what makes me wonder. Everyone sees the word "Novell" on a project and goes all Roy Schestowitz on it, starts talking conspiracies and "tainted code". and then like Epaminodas, they refer to the Sun build as "pure unadulterated" or somesuch.

Are you in no ways suspicious of Sun? Are you in no ways concerned about the dual licensing, or their hidden motives with regard to the Star Office/OpenOffice relationship? Are you aware that most of the go-oo contributions are not in the Sun build because of these reasons, and not because of mono or Novell or any such nonsense?

In short, before you give me another 10 page boycottnovell-style lecture, can someone explain why Sun gets a free ride on this stuff? Keep in mind this company has produced nearly as much anti-linux FUD (to sell Solaris) as Steve Ballmer.

I suspect not, since BN hasn't done an article on that yet. Come back when Roy gives you some talking points.

#

Go-OO: Not for me, thanks. I prefer OpenOffice.org.

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.104.45.99] on December 07, 2008 06:30 AM
I choose not to use go-OO, for pretty much "boycottnovell-style" reasons (since some insist on resorting to ad hominem arguments). Personally, I would prefer that the version of OpenOffice.org included by various Linux distributions be the standard version, rather than Novell's fork (yes, it's a fork, wake up), regardless of Novell's intentions. Novell does not need to be a villain for the go-OO fork of OpenOffice.org to be bad idea.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 81.173.170.93] on December 09, 2008 07:31 AM
Its easy to detect if Go is bad or good. Details my friends...

Go: http://go-oo.org/about/
Now see the email adress @ the bottom of the page. It clearly states that the coordinator (ie the interested party) is Novell here.

Yes, they are very probably interested in throwing stones at Sun. And Sun did a lot for Linux, they even opened their own platform. And unlike Novell, care about GNU GPL & freedom.

No-Go-OO.

#

Go-OO: The best office suite you never knew you used

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 82.135.84.29] on December 14, 2008 10:27 PM
I just have to say THANK YOU NOVELL! Because otherwhise I would be forced to use Windows in our Company, a 99,95% Windows workstations world (that 0,05% is me). Thanks to Novell even those VBA macros in the Excel sheets work fine on my Linux box.
I am able to connect to that Exchange beast (yeah, maybe someone remembers Ximian Evolution, Novell again..)
Thanks to SuSE my sound card works nicely (OK, SuSE developed ALSA before they were bought by Novell, but anyways Mr. Iwai is still a main ALSA dev, and guess who pays him)

Looking at for example LKML lists and GNOME and KDE repos, one can find a lot of people sending patches with @suse.* in their email.
Interestingly there is almost nobody posting there with something like @ubuntu or @canonical...

And what does SUN do for Linux? They _have_ to provide JAVA for Linux, because otherwise nobody would write their webapps in JAVA, as everybody runs Linux on the web servers. Same counts for OpenOffice - or have you ever seen a (Open-)Solaris desktop workstation at any company? (other than SUN itself) :)

#

This story has been archived. Comments can no longer be posted.



 
Tableless layout Validate XHTML 1.0 Strict Validate CSS Powered by Xaraya