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OpenOffice - Downloading, Installing and Basic Overview - Free Computer Tutorials

Posted by Jim Bernstein

OpenOffice is a free full featured office suite similar to Microsoft Office. It contains programs similar to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access and so on. It will even open Microsoft Office files and allow you to edit them.

OpenOffice is open sourced and was created to take away some of the dominant market shared held by Microsoft for office suites and made free in 1999. In 2008, version 3.0 was released and features the ability to import Office Open XML documents but not export them. OpenOffice can run on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, OS/2 and many other platforms.

In this tutorial we will show you how to download and install OpenOffice as well as give you a brief description of the included programs.

OpenOffice can be downloaded for free and is only around 150 MB for the installation file. Once you download the executable (Windows users) you simply double click on it to start the installation. There is not much to installing OpenOffice and it’s basically a matter of clicking on Next through the installation screens.

The first screen you will see tells you that the installation file needs to be extracted on to your hard drive.

By default it will want to extract it to the same place that you downloaded the installation file to. You can change the location or click Unpack to continue.

After unpacking the files it will start the installation wizard.

Here you will put in your user information and decide if you want OpenOffice to be used just for your user account or anyone who logs onto your computer.

Next you will be able to choose between the typical installation or a custom installation. The typical installation will install all the components of OpenOffice and if you choose custom then you can decide which programs you want to be installed on your computer.

The following screen is what you will see if you choose custom. Notice how it shows all the components and allows you to decide what gets installed.

Next you can decide if you want OpenOffice to be the default application to open certain types of Office files such as Word or Excel files. If you don’t have Microsoft Office then you can check all the boxes but if you do then you may or may not want Microsoft Office to be the default program for those types of files.

Next you will click on Install to start the installation. If you want a shortcut placed on your desktop then check the box that says Create a start link on the desktop.

You will notice that OpenOffice uses Java so you may see a Java configuration window.

Next you will see the status of the installation.

Finally the installation will be done and you can click on Finish.

When OpenOffice first runs you will go through the registration process where you will put in your username.

If you want OpenOffice to check for updates automatically then check the checkbox below.

Finally there is the optional registration.

If you checked the option for the desktop shortcut then that will open the OpenOffice main menu showing the available programs included with OpenOffice.

Next: Part 2 - OpenOffice Overview

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