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08 May 2012, 14:52

Apache OpenOffice 3.4.0 debuts

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Apache OpenOffice logo The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) has announced the availability of version 3.4.0 of the open source OpenOffice productivity suite. The new version is the project's first stable release under the governance of the ASF since transitioning from Oracle and being accepted into the Apache Incubator in the middle of last year.

According to its developers, Apache OpenOffice (AOO) 3.4.0, the first update since 3.3.0 from January 2011, now starts up faster than its predecessor and introduces a number of new features such as support for documents secured using AES256 encryption. The Linear Programming solver in the Calc spreadsheet program has been replaced with the CoinMP C-API library from the Computational Infrastructure for Operations Research (COIN-OR) project. As in LibreOffice 3.4.0, the DataPilot functionality has been renamed to Pivot Table, and now supports an unlimited number of fields. A new "Quote all text cells" CSV (Comma Separated Values) export option has been also added to Calc.

Zoom The Writer word processing program in Apache OpenOffice 3.4.0
Other changes include improved ODF 1.2 encryption and Unix Printing support and various enhancements to the Impress presentation and Draw sketching programs. The developers note that Apache OpenOffice, previously known as (OOo), also sees the licence change from the LGPLv3 to the "simpler, non-restrictive" Apache Licence 2.0 and the removal of components with GPL-licensed code.

Jim Jagielski, ASF President and an Apache OpenOffice project mentor said "With the donation of to the ASF, the Foundation, and especially the podling project, was given a daunting task: re-energize a community and transform OpenOffice from a codebase of unknown Intellectual Property heritage, to a vetted and Apache Licensed software suite," adding that, "The release of Apache OpenOffice 3.4 shows just how successful the project has been".

A full list of changes and new features can be found in the announcement news post and in the release notes. Apache OpenOffice is available to download for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux from the project's site. All users are "strongly" advised to upgrade to the new release "to avoid risks resulting from inconsistencies (IP and security issues) found in previous versions of the suite."

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