5 Excellent Free Office Suites for Windows
Free office suites are excellent alternatives to investing in the high price of a copy of Microsoft Office today. However, you must bear in mind that most people – especially when you’re dealing with people in a business environment – expect the files you send them to be in Microsoft Office format.
Almost any free office suite has the capability to export to DOCX, XLS, and PPT so that the core applications of both Microsoft Office and most other office suites are able to open word processing, spreadsheet and presentation files saved in the application you choose to use. Yes, some suites also provide an email client, a calendar app, database manager, web creation tools, PDF editing and more but it is essential that you use one that is able to export the files you create in the basic three applications in a format that can be opened by others.
Second to this consideration is the need to select a package that you feel comfortable with. These are the five that you’ll find best fit the bill.
A comfortable, time-honored suite of office applications
OpenOffice was the first suite developed to compete with Microsoft Office. It is open source and community-developed and includes the three key desktop applications as well as a drawing program and database management utility. It works with many file formats including Microsoft’s.
OpenOffice’s interface is a comfortable throwback to the way Microsoft Office originally looked – just menus and toolbars, for many the way such software is supposed to look. It’s easy and convenient to use, and document, spreadsheet and presentation files can all be exported to Microsoft files, and to PDF as well. While it saves all documents to Open Document by default, this can be changed to save to Microsoft formats should that be more convenient for you, and the application can read Word, Excel and PowerPoint files.
While there is no native cloud storage or email, an extension that enables access to third-party cloud storage providers is available for the free office suite and open source email software such as Mozilla Thunderbird can be accessed. It is compatible with Windows version from XP and up but there is no mobile application.
Ideal for both personal and office use, and can be run on a flash drive…
Ashampoo Office Free is a Microsoft Office file format-compatible free office suite that provides efficient, easy-to-use applications to create documents, presentations and data analysis and organization management software the provides very impressive plans, charts, and reports.
Work with efficient yet easy-to-use programs to create your documents and presentations, and organize or analyze data to create impressive plans, reports, and charts. Its three modules are Ashampoo TextMaker, PlanMaker, and Presentations and they can open, edit and save their Microsoft counterparts –Word, Excel and PowerPoint files. Each has a clean and simple design that is easy to navigate, provides a number of templates, a status bar zoom slider, interactive help and the workspace color is adjustable.
Ashampoo Office Free is a highly compatible solution to your word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation needs and is compatible with Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and 10.
Six feature-rich applications for documents and data processing
Writer, Calc, Impress, Draw, Math, and Base comprise the LibreOffice suite of office applications all of which are regularly updated and are fully integrated.
The free office suite is basically OpenOffice where it had its beginnings. The original combination of three core applications has been continually developed and expanded upon. Its added modules make it fully comparable to Microsoft Word, the main differences being a classic interface as opposed to Microsoft’s ribbon architecture and LibreOffice’s greater multi-language support, graphics file format import filters, and cloud provider access. There is no email client, but emails can be sent out directly from the free office suite through the mail-merge feature without email software.
Like OpenOffice itself, LibreOffice’s Writer has the look and feel of earlier versions Microsoft Word with which it is entirely compatible in terms of both importing and exporting files. Documents can also be saved to PDF.
Originally developed for Windows XP, LibreOffice continues to support XP and Vista, and newer versions are compatible with Windows 7, 8 and 10 (32-Bit/64-Bit). Community development is ongoing. An Android viewer with minimal editing features is available.
Switch interfaces in a lightweight but fully featured free office suite
WPS Office is the current (and renamed) office suite from Kingsoft Office and provides Writer, Presentation and Spreadsheets applications that are fully compatible with Microsoft’s Word, Excel, and Powerpoint. It also has a built-in PDF creator, converter, and a PDF reader. Hundreds of templates are included for quick and easy document creation.
Users can switch between the classic interface, and a number of alternative ‘new look‘ contemporary designs and languages can be switched with just one-click. A Priority Tabs feature is included for easy switching between documents. There is support for import of both 2D and 3D objects, and video and sound can be inserted into slides. In Writer, paragraph and table dimensions can be edited by dragging and dropping, and tables, charts, and images can be inserted and edited from within the application. Documents can be shared using the built-in email function, and there is access to WPS Cloud and File Roaming.
Windows Vista/7/8/8.1/10 (32-Bit/64-Bit) is required with only 200 MB space. Mobile versions are available.
Integrated utilities for the efficient performance of office-related tasks
A reliable free office suite for document processing, creating spreadsheets to generate impressive charts and graphs, and managing multimedia files, SSuite packages its Accel and WordGraph modules with several other utilities including LAN connectivity.
SSuite has tabbed document interfaces and thumbnail previews. There’s an address book utility, an envelope printer, a document administrator to archive and organize documents, an e-mail client and internet browser. You can process images with EzPhoto Editor, play slideshows and, in general, achieve work really efficiently using the additional features such as:
- A Mac dock for access to tools
- Analog clock
- Custom auto-fill lists
- Custom Text and Phrases lists
- Envelope Printer with return address position feature
- WordArt and Math Equations capability in WordGraph
- Create presentations in WordGraph
- Export to presentation format – SSP format
- Export documents to PDF, PNG, GIF, JPG, BMP, EMF, TIFF and SSP for browser and image viewing
SSuite is very light on resources since it does not run on Java. Minimum System Requirements are a 1024×600 Display Size and Windows NT to 10 – 32 bit and 64 bit.
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