Apparently, though unproven, at 02:17 on Monday 23 May 2011, Bill Kenworthy
did opine thusly:
> Do any of them actually work acceptably in terms of compatibility with
> MSword though? - having a good, lite suit available for the "quick" jobs
> would be nice.
Well, my usual initial retort to MS suers on that is "MS Office isn't even
compatible with itself across versions!" It doesn't help much but makes me
feel better :-)
koffice does a reasonable job overall as long as you restrict it to simple
docs. In general, the more complex the source doc, the greater the chances of
failure. This isn't anything to do with Office vs LibreOffice vs KOffice per
se, it's just that office suites are complex beasts and 100% compatibility
between them is unlikely to happen. It was like that in the days in
WordPerfect and not much has changed.
Some problems are just unsolveable. Consider how MS Word lays out pages and
paragraphs on the page - it is fundamentally incompatible with the model OOo
uses internally. Same with anchored images.
> The OO/LibreOffice suits are almost compatible, the others barely if at
> all. Even simple documents fox abiword for instance, and anything
> complex is hopeless.
Your average user creates simple docs (regardless of length) without any style
sheeting. Headings are big text bold, emphasis is bold or italics and by far
the most common font change is to Comic Sans. Most folk avoid bullet/numbered
lists like the plaque (mostly because they can't get it to work and have given
up on having lists randomly re-number themselves).
Spreadsheets for your average user are one big table with columns and rows.
For these documents, KOffice manages fine.
Corporate users are another story. Any corporate has a go-to team of
PowerPoint experts, usually backed up with endless lists of stylesheets and
templates. Good luck with compatibility with those, as you have observed.
> And unfortunately, working in an MS centric organisation means close to
> 100% compatibility is demanded by the other end, especially on documents
> being passed back and forward.
Yup, the only thing that works in an MS shop is Office. It would be the same
in reverse - an Office user would be just as stymied in an OOo/Libre-centric
Some battles can be fought and won.
Sometimes it's easier to install VirtualBox.
alan dot mckinnon at gmail dot com