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First Cut at a GTK4 Port of LibreOffice

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Early days yet, but here's some screenshots of an experimental port of LibreOffice to GTK4 I've commited upstream during the week. It starts without crashing, renders, accepts user keystrokes and mouse events, basic Input Method support also works.

Standard GTK file dialog functionality works.

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Portuguese LibreOffice Manuals and Command Popup HUD for LibreOffice

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  • Brazilians in turbo mode: Impress Guide 7.0 in Portuguese is now available

    The Brazilian LibreOffice community is pleased to announce the immediate availability of the Portuguese Impress 7.0 Guide, the complete guidebook for creating high quality presentations in any environment, be it family, cultural or professional.

    The book is 330 pages, and details the fundamentals of Impress, before covering the concepts of slide masters, styles, presentation templates, graphic objects, transition effects, object animations, export to other formats and much more. It’s rich in illustrations and examples – as well as scripts for the most important operations when editing and running presentations.

    The documentation team in Brazil grew with the arrival of Luciana Mota, Diego Marques Pereira and Márcia Buffon Machado. Here are the newcomers’ messages to all!

  • Command Popup HUD for LibreOffice

    Command Popup is a pop-up window that lets you search for commands that are present in the main menu and run them. This was requested in bug tdf#91874 and over-time accumulated over 14 duplicated bugs reports, so it was a very requested feature.

    I'm intrigued by similar functionality in other programs, because it enables very quick access to commands (or programs) and at the same time don't need to move your hand off the keyboard. It also makes it easy to search for commands - especially in an application like LibreOffice with humongous main menu. So I decided to try to implement it for LibreOffice.

LibreOffice 7.0.6 has been released

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LibreOffice 7.0.6, the sixth minor release of the LibreOffice 7.0 family, is available from All users are invited to update to this version.

End user support is provided by volunteers via email and online resources: On the website and the wiki there are guides, manuals, tutorials and HowTos. Donations help us to make all of these resources available.

For enterprise class deployments, TDF strongly recommends sourcing LibreOffice from one of the ecosystem partners, to get long-term supported releases, dedicated assistance, custom new features and other benefits, including SLAs (Service Level Agreements):

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LibreOffice 7.2 Brings Universal Search Commands Feature

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A really cool feature Search Commands is merged recently in the upcoming LibreOffice 7.2 dev branch. It's super productive. We take a look at how it works.
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LibreOffice Adds A Command Popup / HUD, Inspired By Half-Decade Old Microsoft Office Feature

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Adding to the changes building up for LibreOffice 7.2 ahead of its debut in August is a "Command Popup" or a heads-up display (HUD) of sorts for easily running LibreOffice commands.

For a half-decade now Microsoft Office has offered a "Tell Me" feature whereby it's a text field that the user can enter words/phrases about what they want to do while editing/creating a document. That Tell Me feature can allow quickly accessing different commands that otherwise are tucked away within different menus, etc.

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GTK4 in LibreOffice and LibreOffice Native Language Projects

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  • LibreOffice Begins Landing GTK4 Support Code

    Ahead of this week's LibreOffice 7.2 Alpha and the feature freeze / branching next month, initial GTK4 toolkit support code has begun landing in this open-source office suite. 

    Caolán McNamara of Red Hat has been leading the charge on getting GTK4 toolkit support added to LibreOffice with the initial push having happened yesterday. 

    Don't get too excited though for the moment as it's still a work-in-progress but seems to be coming along at least well enough that this is sliding in for LibreOffice 7.2 rather than being diverted to the next cycle. The initial push of two thousand lines of code on top of the existing GTK3 support downplayed the usability of it. But then over the past day we've seen more than two dozen commits further refining this GTK4 code. 


  • LibreOffice Native Language Projects in 2020

    By helping to translate and market LibreOffice around the world, native language projects bring enthusiasm and passion to the global community. Here’s what they did in 2020…

LibreOffice Merges Initial Support For Compiling To WebAssembly

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Merged into LibreOffice yesterday is initial support for an EmScripten-based cross-build and compiling to WebAssembly (WASM) for in-browser execution or potentially running on the desktop in a portable manner with the likes of Wasmer.

Merged to LibreOffice were a number of WASM commits yesterday. This documentation outlines the WASM build steps involved.

There is also a simple demo application that was added which ends up being a Mandelbrot with the Qt5 tool-kit.

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LibreOffice 7.1.3 Office Suite Released with More Than 100 Bug Fixes

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Coming five weeks after LibreOffice 7.1.2, the LibreOffice 7.1.3 point release is here to address a total of 105 issues across all core components, including Writer, Calc, Draw, and Impress.

According to The Document Foundation, about 25 percent of these fixes are focused on improving the document compatibility with the Microsoft Office file formats, such as DOCX, PPTX, and XLSX.

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LibreOffice: Making a Globe and Bibliography Improvements

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  • 3D Objects: Making a Globe with LibreOffice

    In the dialog box that appears, click on “Bitmap” and then on “Add/Import”. Select the downloaded map, and enter a name for it, that you will use in your collection of bitmaps. The image should be applied to the sphere. If not, select the map from the collection.

    Then, in the “Options” part of the dialog box, select the item “Stretched” from the drop-down list “Style”. Click OK. Your globe is finished!

  • Bibliography improvements in LibreOffice Writer: refer to a specific page

    The bibliography feature in Writer allows authors of e.g. scientific papers to track sources: first you can insert bibliography entry fields, then at the end you can generate a bibliography table automatically.

    Writer recently gained two improvements in this area, and now there is one more: the ability to refer to a specific page of a (potentially long) source.

    First, thanks TUBITAK ULAKBIM who made this work by Collabora possible.

LibreOffice: Learning, LibreOffice, LibreOffice Macro Team, and LibreOffice Conference

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  • I Want to Learn LibreOffice

    This is a collection of recommended videos and tutorials to practically learn LibreOffice for beginners divided to Writer (word processor), Calc (spreadsheet), and Impress (presentation). They are excellent, thorough, and rich of examples user guide made by TheFrugalComputerGuy (videos) and Ahuka (tutorials) -- they are people who care deeply about LibreOffice. If you want to learn LibreOffice, we suggest you start with their tutorials. Thank you very much for them for making these tutorials patiently for years!


    If you prefer learning by reading books or written tutorials, Prof. Kevin O'Brien, also known as Ahuka, one among speakers behind Hacker Public Radio -- a popular internet show about technologies --, made a thorough guide for Writer, Calc, and Impress you can learn by reading. Interestingly, each tutorial is accompanied by its audio recording from the Radio you can listen too. It is worth learning. No other one made such excellent tutorials can be read freely on the web (outside of the official tutorials) for LibreOffice up to today.

  • LibreOffice Macro Team: progress report

    Macros help users to automate common tasks in LibreOffice. In September 2019 we announced a new team in our community to work on macro support. The last progress report was published in April 2020, so it is high time to look into what has happened since then.


    The biggest single event was the introduction of ScriptForge Libraries in LibreOffice 7.1. ScriptForge and its documentation is a collaboration betwen Jean-Pierre Ledure, Alain Romedenne and Rafael Lima. You can read more about it in the January 2021 blog post and the work-in-progress Help content.

  • LibreOffice Conference: Call for Papers is Open !

    The Document Foundation invites all members and contributors to submit talks, lectures and workshops for this year’s LibreOffice Conference, which will take place online. The event is scheduled from September 23 to 25, Thursday to Saturday. Whether you are a seasoned presenter or have never spoken in public before, if you have something interesting to share about LibreOffice, ODF, the Document Liberation Project or the ODF Toolkit, we want to hear from you!

    Proposals should be filed by June 30, 2020, in order to guarantee that they will be considered for inclusion in the conference program.

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today's howtos

  • How To Install Flatpak on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS - idroot

    In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Flatpak on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Flatpak is a package management and software deployment tool created to make the distribution of desktop applications on Linux easier. Flatpak is similar to Ubuntu’s Snapcraft. However, the snap technology is proprietary to Ubuntu. This is why many Linux distribution does not have support for a Snap but they have for Flatpak. This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of Flatpak on an Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa) server. You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

  • NO_ZERO_IN_DATE with MySQL 5.7

    I’m going through some old notes and found this little gem that really confused me last time I was migrating MySQL databases.

  • How to turn off login banner in Linux/Unix with .hushlogin - nixCraft

    Here is a quick tip that explains how to hide and turn off annoying banner in Linux or Unix by creating .hushlogin file.

  • curl -G vs curl -X GET

    You normally use curl without explicitly saying which request method to use. If you just pass in a HTTP URL like curl, curl will use GET. If you use -d or -F curl will use POST, -I will cause a HEAD and -T will make it a PUT. If for whatever reason you’re not happy with these default choices that curl does for you, you can override those request methods by specifying -X [WHATEVER]. This way you can for example send a DELETE by doing curl -X DELETE [URL]. It is thus pointless to do curl -X GET [URL] as GET would be used anyway. In the same vein it is pointless to do curl -X POST -d data [URL]... But you can make a fun and somewhat rare request that sends a request-body in a GET request with something like curl -X GET -d data [URL].

Ramblings about GNOME development

I still like the "C + GLib + GTK-Doc + Devhelp" combination for software development. But it's maybe because that's what I've practiced the most during the 2010's, and it's hard to change habits. What I don't really like, though, is creating lots of GObject subclasses, and writing GObject Introspection-friendly APIs (to take care of language bindings). It's a burden that GNOME library developers need to carry. I said in the previous section that I like a verbose syntax, but here when subclassing a GObject in C, it's a little too verbose (boilerplate code). It needs to be generated with a tool (here is the one that I wrote: gobject-boilerplate scripts). And it's not really malleable code. In the small glib-gtk-book that I wrote several years ago, I described in a chapter the "semi-OOP" C style used by GLib core (not GIO). So, having a kind of simple Object-Oriented style in C, without using GObject. It doesn't require a lot of code to write your own semi-OOP class in C. But then in later chapters I recommended to create GObject subclasses. Time to revisit my copy :-) ? [...] When we know well something, we also know well what are its benefits and drawbacks. We sometimes question ourself: is the grass greener elsewhere? It's nice to explore other worlds, see how things can be done differently. And then coming back to where we were, but with a changed look, new ideas, and, most importantly, a renewed motivation! Read more

Pinebook Pro

I recently bought a Pinebook Pro. This was mainly out of general interest, but also because I wanted to have a spare portable computer. When I was recently having some difficulty with my laptop not charging, I realised that I am dependent on having access to Emacs, notmuch.el and my usual git repositories in the way that most people are dependent on their smartphones – all the info I need to get things done is in there, and it’s very disabling not to have it. So, good to have a spare. I decided to get the machine running the hard way, and have been working to add a facility to install the device-specific bootloader to Consfigurator. It has been good to learn about how ARM machines boot. The only really hard part turned out to be coming up with the right abstractions within Consfigurator, thanks to the hard work of the Debian U-Boot maintainers. This left me with a chroot and a corresponding disk image, properly partitioned and with the bootloader installed. It was only then that the difficulties began: getting a kernel and initrd combination which can output to the Pinebook Pro’s screen and take input from its keyboard is not really straightforward yet, but that’s required for inputting disk encryption passwords, which are required on portable devices. I don’t have the right hardware to make a serial connection to the machine, so all this took a lot of trial and error. I’ve ended up using Manjaro’s patched upstream kernel build for now, because that compiles in the right drivers, and debugging an initrd without a serial connection is far too inefficient. Read more

Elive 3.8.20 beta released

The Elive Team is proud to announce the release of the beta version 3.8.20 Read more