I have been using open source software for over 4 years now. First, it was switching to Firefox and Google Chrome, and later adding Opera and RockMelt on the side. Then it was using OpenOffice instead of MS Office.
I had come across LibreOffice several months ago, but never gave it a second thought until two weeks ago when I found out there was a call for locations to host the LibreOffice Conference 2013. I contacted two dozen people from the open source community in Montreal and a week later, our application was submitted. Montreal is now competing with Milan to be the host of this international conference.
This is kind of a big deal. Montreal is not exactly at the forefront of the open source adoption curve. It is quite the laggard when compared to cities like Munich and Paris. Munich recently announced making the transition to LibreOffice and even adopting Linux. They saved approximately 11 million euros.
While I haven’t made the transition to Linux (yet), I am definitely not going to upgrade to Windows 8. I had the chance to try it at work, and I didn’t like it very much (I work in tech support).
In the last two weeks or so, when not studying for finals, I have looked at the different “major” and less major distributions of Linux to see which ones offered LibreOffice as the default office suite. The results are surprising. Distributions that together aggregate over 80% market share among Linux users support LibreOffice. And that’s good news. Here’s an overview of what I found:
The most well-known among the Linux distributions does not come with LibreOffice included.
This is the 12.10 version released in October 2012.
The next version will be 13.04 and is scheduled for release on April 25 2013.
Let’s hope that this version will include LibreOffice.
- Arch Linux
According to the distribution’s wiki, Arch Linux has been supportive of LibreOffice since dropping support for OpenOffice in March 2011.
Starting with the Debian Wheezy release (no release date yet), Debian will include LibreOffice as the default office suite. This release has reached beta3 stage as of Oct 18th.
The current version is openSUSE 12.2 and according to its release notes it fully supports LibreOffice as the default office suite.
Most recent version is openSUSE 12.3 Milestone 2.
The release date for 12.3 as stable version is March 2013.
Starting with Fedora 18 LibreOffice will be fully supported. Expect this version early in January 2013.
The next version is expected in May 2013.
Another distribution that supports LibreOffice is Mageia 2. The announcement was made on their blog in November 2010.
The next release will be Mageia 3 expected March 20th 2013.
This planned released has reached Beta 1 stage two days ago.
This distribution also supports LibreOffice. The version 2012.12.21 released today comes loaded with the office suite ready to use.
There is no planned date for the next release.
- Linux Mint
This distribution is at version 14. And Linux Mint 14 comes with LO 2.6.22 (while the current version is 3.6.4).
Version 15 of Mint is expected in Spring 2013.
This list was inspired by several “top Linux distributions” lists and I want to give them credit: