The Document Foundation Blog

2013/02/07

The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.0

Filed under: Announcements, LibreOffice — Tags: , , — italovignoli @ 10:09
LibreOffice 4.0 has arrived

The new LibreOffice 4.0 has arrived

The free office suite the community has been dreaming of for twelve years

Berlin, February 7, 2013 – The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.0, the free office suite the community has been dreaming of since 2001. LibreOffice 4.0 is the first release that reflects the objectives set by the community at the time of the announcement, in September 2010: a cleaner and leaner code base, an improved set of features, better interoperability, and a more diverse and inclusive ecosystem.

LibreOffice 4.0: a community on fire

In less than 30 months, LibreOffice has grown dramatically to become the largest independent free software project focused on end user desktop productivity. TDF inclusive governance and the copyleft license have been instrumental in attracting more than 500 developers – three quarters of them being independent volunteers – capable of contributing over 50,000 commits.

The resulting code base is rather different from the original one, as several million lines of code have been added and removed, by adding new features, solving bugs and regressions, adopting state of the art C++ constructs, replacing tools, getting rid of deprecated methods and obsoleted libraries, and translating twenty five thousand lines of comments from German to English. All of this makes the code easier to understand and more rewarding to be involved with for the stream of new members of our community.

“LibreOffice 4.0 is a milestone in interoperability and an excellent foundation for our continued work to improve the User Interface,” explains Florian Effenberger, Chairman of the Board of Directors. “Our project is not only capable of attracting new developers on a regular basis, but it also creates a transparent platform for cooperation based on a strong Free Software ethos, where corporate sponsored and volunteer developers work to attain the same objective.”

LibreOffice 4.0: the new features

LibreOffice 4.0 offers a large number of new characteristics, which are listed on this page: https://www.libreoffice.org/download/4-0-new-features-and-fixes.

  • Integration with several content and document management systems – including Alfresco, IBM FileNet P8, Microsoft Sharepoint 2010, Nuxeo, OpenText, SAP NetWeaver Cloud Service and others – through the CMIS standard.
  • Better interoperability with DOCX and RTF documents, thanks to several new features and improvements like the possibility of importing ink annotations and attaching comments to text ranges.
  • Possibility to import Microsoft Publisher documents, and further improvement of Visio import filters with the addition of 2013 version (just announced).
  • Additional UI incremental improvements, including Unity integration and support of Firefox Themes (Personas) to give LibreOffice a personalized look.
  • Introduction of the widget layout technique for dialog windows, which makes it easier to translate, resize and hide UI elements, reduces code complexity, and lays a foundation for a much improved user interface.
  • Different header and footer on the first page of a Writer document, without the need of a separate page style.
  • Several performance improvements to Calc, plus new features such as export of charts as images (JPG and PNG) and new spreadsheet functions as defined in ODF OpenFormula.
  • First release of Impress Remote Control App for Android, supported only on some Linux distributions. (The second release, coming soon, will be supported on all platforms: Windows, MacOS X and all Linux distros and binaries.)
  • Significant performance improvements when loading and saving many types of documents, with particular improvements for large ODS and XLSX spreadsheets and RTF files.
  • Improved code contribution thanks to Gerrit: a web based code review system, facilitating the task for projects using Git version control system (although this is not specific of LibreOffice 4.0, it has entered the production stage just before the 4.0 branch).

LibreOffice 4.0: under the hood

There are a number of fixes and improvements primarily of interest to developers: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.0#API_Changes.

Overall excellent backwards compatibility is retained for legacy extensions, but moving forward TDF is committed to a more pro-active approach to evolving the UNO APIs, with more functionality to be deprecated, and eventually dropped, in due time – according to the six month release cycle – throughout the LibreOffice 4.x release series.

During the last seven months, since the branch of LibreOffice 3.6 and during the entire development cycle of LibreOffice 4.0, developers have made over 10,000 commits. On average, one commit every 30 minutes, including weekends and the holiday season: a further testimonial of the incredible vitality of the project.

How to get LibreOffice 4.0

LibreOffice 4.0 is immediately available for download from the following link: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/. Extensions for LibreOffice are available from the following link: http://extensions.libreoffice.org/extension-center.

Changelogs are available at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.0.0/RC1 (solved in 4.0.0.1), https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.0.0/RC2 (solved in 4.0.0.2) and https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Releases/4.0.0/RC3 (solved in 4.0.0.3).

Support The Document Foundation

LibreOffice users, free software advocates and community members can support The Document Foundation with a donation at http://donate.libreoffice.org. Money collected will be used to grow the infrastructure, and support marketing activities to increase the awareness of the project, both at global and local level.

54 Comments

  1. Reblogged this on Wild Webmink and commented:
    Some significant new features here, especially the CMS integration with Alfresco, Sharepoint and others. The interoperability continues too – LibreOffice is increasingly the “Swiss Army knife” of file importers, able to create ODF from just about anything. Impressive work.

    Comment by Simon Phipps — 2013/02/07 @ 12:31

  2. I canˊt belivevit. Fanally Iˊll could open my old *.pub files on linux!!

    Comment by jota1971 — 2013/02/07 @ 13:06

  3. YEAH!!! WAY TO GO!!!

    Comment by Fábio de Salles — 2013/02/07 @ 13:12

  4. Congratulatons everybody, here’s to many more releases! Can’t wait to see what this developer community is capable of once the refactoring and cleaning of the code base is done.

    Comment by Jens Mildner — 2013/02/07 @ 13:26

  5. Thank you!

    Comment by Alex — 2013/02/07 @ 13:40

  6. 4.0 is a huge milestone for the 2 year old project. Well done! Pet peeve: Can you fix Windows 7 taskbar interaction some time?

    (Turkish) Turkce okuyucular icin yorumlarimi blogumda paylastim.

    Comment by dalgamotor — 2013/02/07 @ 14:42

  7. Where’s the Impress remote control app? It isn’t in the Play Store or on the LibreOffice Web site.

    Comment by Justin S — 2013/02/07 @ 14:48

  8. In your developper, did you use Apache’s developper ?
    https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Talk:ReleaseNotes/4.0

    Thank for given more information.

    Comment by vulcain — 2013/02/07 @ 15:17

  9. The persona importation functionality doesn’t seem to alter the menus text color. It makes darker personas unusable on Libreoffice.

    But that is just a minor quirk. I still love the persona functionality. Good job everyone. Keep up the good work.

    Comment by Joel Puga — 2013/02/07 @ 16:49

  10. I read “Reduce Java code: Port Fax and Letter Wizard to Python (Xisco Faulí)”
    Is there a plan to remove Java ? Then, is there a todo list to follow the progression ?

    Comment by antistress — 2013/02/07 @ 16:51

  11. Do we still need Java to use all the features or has that requirement been eliminated?

    Comment by Beno — 2013/02/07 @ 16:57

    • Java is not required. Only few features are using Java (Base especially), just read LibO website. ;)

      Comment by Pawel — 2013/02/08 @ 20:52

  12. You Guys Are The Best – You Are The Real Deal – The Demise OF Corporate Monopoly And The Rise OF Non Profit Organizations (^^)//

    Comment by █★BORN❤TO❂BE☁WILD↗█ (@Vote_Online) — 2013/02/07 @ 18:23

    • Thanks guys – changed to LibreOffice 6 months ago and never looked back. Congrats on a new milestone!

      Comment by Pete — 2013/02/07 @ 18:47

    • Well said. :)

      Comment by S. Rathinagiri — 2013/03/06 @ 07:52

  13. great impressive job!

    Comment by pablo — 2013/02/07 @ 22:03

  14. Great job, guys, way to go :)

    Hope you’ll be able soon to get rid of Java and to make it optional and not used as default.

    Comment by Sleeping — 2013/02/08 @ 02:45

  15. Excellent work, congrats full credit to the development team !!! keep it up !

    Comment by Rajendra Parmar — 2013/02/08 @ 12:55

  16. WOW!!.. the new homepage is beautiful!
    nice work!

    Comment by bawlaw — 2013/02/08 @ 16:19

  17. Wonderful work. Best alternative to expensive Microsoft suite. The product is clean, fast makes you really productive.

    Comment by Anthony Wang — 2013/02/08 @ 18:23

  18. “Additional UI incremental improvements, including Unity integration”

    It is not work in Ubuntu 12.04.2 with Unity 5.18, neither with Ubuntu 13.04 (daily build)… No global menu and no HUD.

    Comment by Sergio Benjamim — 2013/02/08 @ 20:32

  19. Gracias por esta nueva joya de oficina, me encanta y funciona de maravilla en mi Win XP, Felicitaciones desede Guatemala

    Comment by Felipe — 2013/02/09 @ 01:15

  20. Joel Puga @ 9.: “…It makes darker personas unusable on Libreoffice (…) But that is just a minor quirk.”

    Yep, I think so too, but it is a big step to properly update the old LibreOffice GUI. ;-)

    With regard to the 4.0 version: G R E A T… Thank you!

    Comment by DrakoDrakkonis — 2013/02/09 @ 01:15

  21. LO 4.0 is fantastic.

    So is the new homepage. Thanks!
    :)

    Comment by paul2012 — 2013/02/09 @ 06:00

  22. A reblogué ceci sur L'Alambic de M. Ratkovic and commented:
    L’arrivée de la nouvelle version majeure de LibreOffice se fête. Quand on est habitué au confort de Pages, avec son Inspecteur bien meilleur que le système des barres d’outils, on rêve de progrès plus nets du côté de l’interface. En ce qui concerne les fonctionnalités, c’est un régal.

    Comment by M. Ratkovic — 2013/02/09 @ 18:48

  23. Is it necessary uninstall 3.6V to instal 4.0V?

    Comment by Margt — 2013/02/10 @ 19:44

    • @ 24. Margt: My own experience in the past with OpenOffice and LibreOffice in the present says “Yes!”, that it is better to uninstall any old version before installing the new one. Greetings!

      Comment by DrakoDrakkonis — 2013/02/12 @ 00:33

  24. u guys r d best!

    Comment by chris — 2013/02/11 @ 00:22

  25. Dziękuję za kawał solidnego softu.

    THX for such as great piece of free sofware. Stay strong, live forever! :)

    Comment by Max (@maxxxl) — 2013/02/11 @ 23:10

  26. I don’t know, what to say.
    This is amazing!

    Comment by Tude — 2013/02/12 @ 13:11

    • Dare I say it, but I think the issues that I have raised are valid, and would therefore require a positive response. I’m not “splitting hairs” for the sake of it. Issues such as the those that I raised on my previous post, will serve to turn many would be users away.

      Personally, I’m doing fine with the installations of 3.5.7.2 on my GNU+Linux and Windows platforms.

      According to your release notes for LibreOffice 3.6.5 Final (2013-01-30), it is not bug free

      I genuinely want to see this project succeed, become an “easy sell”, and pick up more satisfied users who would otherwise pay money to lock themselves into a proprietary gaol (jail). So, I’d suggest that you provide on your home page; a clear and obvious working link to a bug free stable version download, and a working link to the relevant release notes. Surely, this is not too much to ask.

      Comment by A Wave. — 2013/02/14 @ 23:12

      • So you want a link to a bug free version of a piece of software made of several million lines of code? Yes, I guess that’s too much to ask.

        Comment by goyodiaz — 2013/02/16 @ 15:25

      • Bug free software does not exist, including proprietary software. The difference is that we discuss bugs in public, while proprietary software hides everything – including bugs – from the public, and therefore it might look to naive eyes as bug free. The reality is that proprietary software is just obfuscated, but this is part of the business model (otherwise, how could you dare to ask hundreds of dollars for a bug afflicted software?).

        Comment by italovignoli — 2013/02/16 @ 16:22

      • Firstly; my apologies to “Tude” – my comment should not have shown up under your post. Secondly; my response to “goyodiaz”, and “italovignoli” – agreed, point taken. I should not have used the term “bug free”. Cheers.

        Comment by A Wave. — 2013/02/21 @ 02:01

  27. 1. The link to LibreOffice 3.5.X release notes fails (The most Stable). Clicking the link leaves one on the LibreOffice 4.0.0 Final (2013-02-07) and LibreOffice 3.6.5 Final (2013-01-30) release notes page.
    2. Is it acceptable to declare LibreOffice 3.6.5 Final (2013-01-30) as “Stable”? I would not have thought so. I would have thought that LibreOffice 3.5.7.2 would be the real “Stable” version currently.
    3. I come from a country (Australia) that seems to not understand what free software is. It is hard to sell my friends and colleagues the virtues of LibreOffice, when your home page throws LO 4 (not yet “Stable”) in one’s face, and then the download page directs one to the unstable version first. My concern is that they’d download and install the unstable versions, and then complain that it is a dodgy product and never use it again. Remember what you’ve done with the website is great for those who are already converted, but I will suggest that it will not help keep would be new converts.

    Comment by A Wave — 2013/02/12 @ 23:52

  28. Thank you for all the good work ! I’m on LibreOffice since you split with the other opensource project and I’ll continue using your great software. So many functionalities, so many things you can do with it ! TDF Power !

    Comment by Vingo Vreez — 2013/02/13 @ 12:26

  29. Great stuff. What would be really fantastic for all the Ubuntu users out there is if you could make the 4.0 release available via a PPA. This would make installing the suite and keeping it up to date a virtually zero-effort undertaking for users.

    Comment by Mark Scott — 2013/02/14 @ 10:55

  30. I have been using LibreOffice ever since it split off from OOo. I have many files that were saved by LibO 3.4.x, 3.5.x and 3.6.x.

    Today I installed LibreOffice 4.0. It cannot open ANY of my files. It can open a .doc just fine, but ALL of the .odt and .ods files I have will not open. When I try to open one, it says the file is corrupt and offers the option to attempt recovery, but that throws another error instantly.

    LibreOffice 4.0 is complete and utter FAIL! I am back to 3.6.5 now as that version actually works.

    I notice the release notes say improved compatibility with .docx and .rtf files. Too bad that came at the expense of compatibility with ODF files.

    Comment by Pissed — 2013/02/15 @ 17:37

    • Like countless others I’ve installed LibreOffice 4.0 – I use the English User Interface language – without any problems, as does my wife who uses the Chinese UI language. In fact, the new installation is international, which makes everyone’s life that much easier! Add the Help language pack of your choice, and your good to go.
      We regularly open MS Office documents using LO, also without any issues. Documents that have been created with older versions of both OpenOffice and LibreOffice are handled without any problems whatsoever.
      It seems you have problems that are not necessarily caused by LO, but possibly by the installation itself. Try to UN-install both LO and OO before installing LO version 4.0.
      Also, maybe inconsistencies pertaining to your computer’s Operating System settings regarding file extensions are causing your issues.
      I hope this helps you to solve your problems.

      Comment by ChinaMan — 2013/02/16 @ 05:01

      • I am on a fresh install of Windows 7 (formatted drive and installed last week). I have data stored on a separate physical disk. I installed LIbreOffice 4.0 with no prior versions having been on this machine. I selected only English dictionary and interface at install time and immediately followed by installing the English help files.
        That resulted in a very broken installation of LibreOffice.
        Needing to get something done, I uninstalled 4.0 and installed 3.6.5, which worked.
        Today, for testing, I attempted to install 4.0 again into a separate directory. The installer removed 3.6 WITHOUT WARNING (VERY BAD!!), but at least the upgrade to 4.0 resulted in a working LibreOffice. I now have 4.0 installed and working.
        It seems the upgrade case, which is probably waht nearly all developers and tested have experienced, works, but the fresh install scenario is where the failure is. Some developer should try doing a fresh install in a VM and see what happens.

        Comment by Pissed — 2013/02/16 @ 18:17

  31. 1. The link to LibreOffice 3.5.X release notes STILL FAILS to open the LibreOffice 3.5.X release notes page. Is it too hard a task to fix this issue?
    2. Don’t drive would be converts away…….as that will not help this world adopt free software.

    Comment by A Wave — 2013/02/17 @ 03:00

  32. I use LibreOffice exclusively for Presentations and Spreadsheets. But two things I’m extremely scared of using LibreOffice for: Writing documents (letters, reports) and typing equations. For that I find Latex extremely convenient. A built-in writer2latex like feature will be highly appreciated. There might be ways other than Latex to achieve Latex like precision, but I would love to have LibreOffice innovate in this area before anyone else.

    Comment by Ajay Anand — 2013/02/19 @ 22:44

  33. 4.x looks good, but 2 things:

    1) I still need at least read access to old Staroffice files. I’m pretty sure there’s still some .sxw lurking in the system. If not maintained as a feature could it be made available as an extension?

    2) My general practice on any new code branch is to wait for .1 to convert. By then the worst of the inevitable bugs that turn up in public testing (i.e. first adopters) are usually fixed. Will do the same here (so I’m waiting – still on 3.6.5). I agree that there is no such thing as bug-free software, commercial or otherwise, but here there seems to be an effort to prioritize & address them quickly and openly.

    I have tried to promote LO among acquaintances. So far little success, because of things like the cloud MS & G stuff and loss-leader things based on work usage (with significant fine print that few read). I’ve used SO-OO & now LO for years at home, including doing document & spreadsheet work at home for transfer to/from MS products with very few issues. There’s really very little ordinary mortals need to do with an office suite that LO can’t do and the commercials can.

    Comment by mreki — 2013/02/24 @ 21:31

  34. I changed the install path to LibreOffice 3.6 during LibreOffice 4 instillation and it installed no problem. Then I renamed the folder in Program Files C:\Program Files\LibreOffice 4.0 from C:\Program Files\LibreOffice 3.6 just so new documents reflected the new update. Will run fully without renaming the folder though. No need to uninstall a damn thing. Works okay as well. With the version for portable apps I ran the install that detected the flash drive and overwrote version 3.6 and everything worked as well. Great result for me.

    Comment by michael — 2013/02/24 @ 23:13

  35. I have a bug in 4.0: application close whilie you want to insert an index (it crashes).

    Comment by maestro — 2013/02/25 @ 10:22

    • ok, the newer version fixes it

      Comment by maestro — 2013/02/26 @ 09:46

  36. There is more options to Libre Office 4.0 Draw than meets the eye. Is there an operators manual available?

    Comment by Walter A. Carolus — 2013/03/04 @ 00:46

  37. Will Libre Office 4.0 work on Windows XP?

    Comment by Ernest — 2013/03/07 @ 03:17

  38. Thanks a lot for the free stuff. I left widows 6 months back for good. But, give me back the simple and full text boundaries in LOWriter. At least provide it as optional for one who wants to have it. Those perverted angles make me angry.

    Comment by Googly Googly — 2013/03/12 @ 15:17

    • In order to see the page boundary, you must visualize hidden characters.

      Comment by italovignoli — 2013/03/12 @ 21:18

  39. I want “Enter” and “Delete” menu button so that we can enter or delete just clicking with mouse. Though I have created those on OpenOffice with macro and imported it to LibreOffice.

    Comment by Nazmul Ahmed Noyon — 2013/03/31 @ 06:55

  40. They need to redo the way frames are handled in text documents. Trying to resize or move a frame is a nightmare. Whoever eliminated the ability to just grab a corner or side to resize should be drawn and quartered. I’ll go back to OpenOffice if they don’t fix this ASAP.

    Comment by grawburg2012 — 2013/04/25 @ 20:30

  41. Have had numerous crashes upon opening new writer document, doing a cut and paste of text into the new document, not being able to open the Save command and having the entire document crash. The next screen was a recovery, clicked and opened to a recovery successful only to find a blank document. Never happened with Open Office.

    Comment by trek — 2013/04/26 @ 19:06


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