Why MS Office has compatibility issues with LibreOffice, explained by LibreOffice founder

At FOSDEM 2017, Fedora Ambassador Amita Sharma interviewed the founder of LibreOffice, Italo Vignoli, about why there are compatibility issues between proprietary office software and LibreOffice. You may have issues going from the proprietary format to an open format, but Italo explains why this is and what you can do to work around it.

Fedora proudly ships LibreOffice with every release. You can learn more about LibreOffice and the Document Foundation at the following links.


18 thoughts on “Why MS Office has compatibility issues with LibreOffice, explained by LibreOffice founder

  1. Ok so what do we have to do to ensure interoperability between LO and MSO? If LO is using the standart document format and it's still not enough to guarantee 100% interoperability with MSO then there has to be more to it than simply saving documents using LO.

  2. 4:04 Unfortunately, those technical bodies (ISO) were railroaded by Microsoft into fast-tracking its OOXML format as an official standard, regardless of the glaring gaps and inconsistencies in the spec. So even though Microsoft can now claim it is an “official standard” (ISO 29500), it is a “standard” that no one can correctly implement–not even Microsoft.

    Stick to ODF (ISO 26300) — it’s a much simpler, shorter spec that actually makes sense.

  3. 1:08 Microsoft Office isn’t even compatible with itself. Take the same document between two different machines, supposedly running the same version of MS Office, and it can look different.

    And people try to blame LibreOffice for this…

  4. I had to write a program for a freelance job that scrapped a website and based on the data made an envelope in Microsoft Word and a letter where certain parts of the letter were filled in by the program. Long story short I spent like 3 days trying to find information on MSDN (Where most of Microsoft's developer documentation is) and I couldn't figure out the Microsoft format. I was about to give up then someone mentioned an in-house tool they use in one of the Microsoft videos. And then it took me another day or two to get it working the way I wanted. I totally appreciate the work LibreOffice has accomplished because of this nightmare I went through.

  5. Great explanation. I have had trouble converting xlsx to odf. Seems like if I leave it as xlsx even though I want to live in Libre Office from now on the document works. Will be building all future docs in LO. Fleeing MS.

  6. At work, they use Windows 7 with either Office 2010 on some computers and Office 2013 with other computers. Text docs are largely fine as is calc docs. ppt/presentations is another issue altogether. If I create the ppt on Libre office or even WPS for that matter, the margins get thrown out of wack, and word font looks really weird.

    What I do is that I have downloaded the portable app for Libre office and as long as the ppt isn't too heavy, it seems to work fine.

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