Welcome back to our series looking at how Collabora Online matches the document-editing needs of different sectors. Today, we will dive into the world of finance, where information and data means money, and security is key. Collabora Online stands tall as the guardian of your document vault, keeping your information more secure than a Swiss bank.
Building Your Document Fort Knox
In finance, information security is paramount. At Collabora Online, we get it. So unlike other cloud-based document editors, Collabora Online will keep your files secure on your server, in your premise, under your jurisdiction, all the time. Rather than duplicating and posting copies to every file editor or reader’s browser, Collabora Online retains your files centrally, and operates more like a hyper-efficient remote desktop than a browser-based document editor, yet still allows end users to view or edit documents depending on their permissions.
For users without editing privileges, there can be no unauthorised stripping of permissions, and download or copy/paste access is controlled in a way that other document editors can only dream of – fully enforced from the server, with no reliance on client-side access controls.
Documents can also be further watermarked with user IDs, burnt into the document pixels at the server, reducing any remaining likelihood of leaking screenshots or photos, and ensuring the source of any information loss is immediately identifiable.
You might be wondering, “Does this ultra-secure, on-premise document editor mean sacrificing remote accessibility and collaborative efficiency?” Fear not – Collabora Online not only ensures top-level security, but also unleashes the power of remote access and seamless collaboration.
Collaborate on your financial reports, spreadsheets, and documents from anywhere with an internet connection. Our platform is designed to maximise security, whilst still retaining accessibility, giving you the freedom to work without compromise. You can think of it as giving each user their own unique and trackable pen to write on the same document concurrently, but you are holding the document centrally throughout the process. This methodology is different to most other browser-based document editors that essentially function by making copies of documents, distributing copies to every editor to work on individually, before collating all the changes made centrally.
With Collabora Online your files don’t venture into the unknown, they stay within the confines of your server or trusted local hosting partner. No unauthorised sharing, no uninvited guests, just your documents and your users.
A safe bet with Collabora Online
Choosing Collabora Online is a smart investment, Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s don’t do document editor ratings, but if they did, we’d be AAA. With all the functionality you know and expect, real security, a familiar interface, robust version history, redlining, tracked changes and more, your financial documents will have everything they need.
In our ongoing exploration of how Collabora Online empowers various sectors, we’ve discussed use cases within education, governments, and national defence. Now, let’s turn our attention to the legal world, where accuracy, control, and security are paramount. Collabora Online, our flagship collaborative office suite, continues to prove itself as a versatile and robust solution, aligning seamlessly with the unique needs of the legal profession.
Document Security at Its Core
In the legal realm, confidentiality and document security are non-negotiable. Collabora Online builds a fortress of security around your legal documents. Unlike traditional document editors, where files travel between servers and devices, Collabora Online adopts a server-centric approach. Your documents never leave the secure confines of the server, offering unparalleled control over sensitive legal information. This stands in stark contrast to other document editors such as Microsoft Office, where files are copied in their entirety and sent to users’ browsers for editing, with changes then merged centrally. Collabora Online in effect gives multiple users their own set of unique and trackable pens to work on the same document concurrently, and crucially there isn’t a (metaphorical) photocopier or secretary frantically looking for and merging changes in sight. This all provides legal professionals the assurance they need in an era of increasing data privacy concerns.
Track Every Change, Preserve Every Version
For legal professionals, clarity in document history is indispensable. Collabora Online’s robust version history, redlining, and track changes features are tailored to the meticulous requirements of legal document management. As mentioned above, since the document never leaves the confines of your own on-premise (or trusted hosting partner’s) servers, there is no way for third parties to alter contents without your knowledge. Read-only files stay read only, download permissions are controlled, and any screenshots watermarked with user details to prevent unauthorised sharing – something other browser-based or offline document editing suites struggle to control (as the U.S. Department of Defense recently discovered). Any and all changes can and will be clearly displayed in the document history. Whether it’s scrutinising the evolution of a contract, identifying modifications, or preserving a pristine or unpublished version, Collabora Online offers a comprehensive toolkit for legal practitioners to navigate the complexities of document collaboration with ease.
If you are using Microsoft Office 365 as your document editor, it is becoming increasingly unclear if they are in any way compliant with GDPR regulations, or indeed if they have any intention to comply with the law. This is the conclusion of the latest two-year study carried out by the German privacy regulator DSK (Datenschutzkonferenz). Worryingly, DSK’s accusations are not merely legal nit-picking, but relate to how Microsoft shares data with U.S. authorities. “[Microsoft may] provide disproportionate access rights for U.S. intelligence services and there is no judicial recourse for EU citizens.”1 “To compensate for the fundamental rights inadequacies of [U.S. laws providing extensive access rights to US intelligence services] identified by the European Court of Justice, it would be necessary to take measures to prevent or render ineffective the access of U.S. authorities – and thus Microsoft – to personal data.”2
Whilst the DSK report appears to have public services in mind, and is primarily concerned about schools and other public bodies, for any legal practice these allegations should be sounding serious alarm bells. With a locally hosted Collabora Online deployment, you can be sure your documents will always stay within your local legal jurisdiction, or for maximum control, host your documents on-premise.
Collabora Online provides a quality solution that meets the rigorous standards legal practice demands. Already in use by government departments, educational institutions, and across the private sector sector, Collabora Online enables legal professionals to focus on their expertise, while handling the legal and security intricacies of document editing and collaborative working.
Original German: Für die USA hat der EuGH in ‘Schrems II’ festgestellt, dass FISA 702 und E.O. 12333 unverhältnismäßige Zugriffsrechte für US-Geheimdienste vorsehen und für EU-Bürger kein gerichtlicher Rechtsschutz gegeben ist.
Original German: Um die vom EuGH identifizierten am EU-Maßstab gemessenen grundrechtlichen Unzulänglichkeiten von FISA 702 auszugleichen, wäre es erforderlich, Maßnahmen zu ergreifen, die den Zugriff der US-Behörden – und damit von Microsoft – auf personenbezogene Daten verhindern oder ineffektiv machen.
Thank You for Everything We Achieved Together in 2023 🤝
At the end of the year, we like to look back at what we have achieved as a team alongside our worldwide network of partners and the community. 2023 was a particularly significant year for us as we celebrated ten years of Collabora Productivity, adding another productive decade to our mission of bringing document editing and trillions of existing documents into the free world!
In March we held another successful COOL Days conference, this time in Cambridge, which brought together our team, partners and the community. We are looking forward to another great event in April 2024 – join us!
As well as our own events, our team also attended over ten locations to present talks, meet partners and share Collabora Online with the wider community. You can keep up to date with our adventures on our events page.
2023 saw many organisations and users throwing off their proprietary shackles, and embracing the freedom open-source solutions bring. In particular, we saw many educational institutions reconsidering their relationship with Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace amid privacy concerns, great strides being taken by local and national governments such as the openDesk project in Germany, and increasing numbers of private companies taking back control of their document storage and editing needs.
Collabora Online, Collabora Office and our mobile apps have all seen performance improvements and increased functionality. In July, we released the new major release of our flagship product Collabora Online 23.05, which included increased interoperability, performance boosts and a whole range of new features and accessibility improvements. Thank you for your support! Let’s take a deeper dive into what we have achieved together this year. 💜
Collabora Online 22.05 → 23.05
Our flagship product, Collabora Online saw marked improvements in 2023, introducing many exciting new features and a big focus on accessibility, working to bring the best digital experience we can to all our users, regardless of their abilities or challenges.
CODE: Developing a Rock-Solid Enterprise Version 💪
The latest major release of the Collabora Online Development Edition (CODE) 23.05 was released in June. CODE always appears in advance of the corresponding version of Collabora Online – the Development Edition contains all new features which are extensively tested before becoming available in the Enterprise version (COOL). An overview of CODE releases for 2023 can be found in the release notes but will mostly mirror those of Collabora Online. You can find the conversations about CODE on social media, by searching for the hashtag #cool_dev on Mastodon or Twitter.
Powerful New Features for Collabora Office on the Desktop 🖥️
August 2023 saw the latest major release of Collabora Office, our long term supported desktop Office Suite for Windows, macOS, and Linux. This release brought a number of powerful productivity features focusing on accessibility and improving user experience. The new features contain code that was contributed to LibreOffice 7.4, 7.5 and 7.6. Collabora Office for Windows is available through the Microsoft Store. The latest version for macOS can be bought from the App Store. We also appreciate those who help us test the latest features inside our unstable snapshots.
August 2023: major release of Collabora Office 23.05 including dark mode, interoperability features, document themes, 64-bit zip support, advanced editing features for tables and forms and so much more!
September 2023: MS Office interoperability improvements including further support of document themes, floating tables and pivot tables.
December 2023: Collabora Office 23.05.6 – STYLEREF, floating tables properties and advanced header and footer functionality.
Many new Features for Collabora Office for Android, iOS & Chrome OS📱
Our major release for mobile and tablet devices in September 2023 brought more of the functionality from Collabora Online into the pockets of our users, as well as improving the current user experience and making navigating on smaller screens easier. Now you can use dark mode, improved form controls in Writer, Sparklines, consistent dialogs and a better UX for users on smaller screened devices.
COOL Days 2023 took place in Cambridge, with more than 50 participants joining from our team, partners and the community. We presented 45 lightning talks showcasing our talented developers’ work across the year, held workshops and discussions with our partners about the importance of data protection in Europe, shared our development roadmap, and further discussed how to mutually support our sales and marketing efforts as part of our partnership. The community dived into a LibreOffice Hackfest and of course we had a great time socialising and team building around historic Cambridge.
LibreOffice Community & Contributions to 7.5 and 7.6
Collabora Productivity is part of the ecosystem developing and advancing LibreOffice technology. We are the largest contributor to the LibreOffice codebase, with our developers contributing many commits to the LibreOffice core.
Display soft breaks as line breaks at fontwork. tdf#148000 (Attila Szűcs, Collabora)
Added support to open multi image tiff files tdf#155444 (Rashesh Padia, Collabora)
Auto fitting text scaling algorithm has been changed so it works similar to MS Office. (Tomaž Vajngerl, Collabora)
Of course, we also had many of our developers share their work in the LibreOffice Technology devroom at FOSDEM this year. You can find links to their talks and slides in our blog.
This year we have welcomed 20 new partners from across Europe, Australia and South America including Oodrive, Salesframe, Aridhia and unodata. We are very happy to have a growing partner network allowing more and more users to take control of their data.
This year we have seen our team grow, adding another 17 people to our core team at Collabora Productivity within our Sales, Marketing and Technical teams, with 50% of these coming from the Collabora Online Community. We love to hire smart people who have contributed to the Open Source community. This allows us to provide a richer experience for our partners and customers.
Collabora Online Community Contributions
The Collabora Online Community kept growing and helped to improve the software through their commits, feedback, and translations. You can see from the stats above that our Community is doing great things! You too, can help to make Collabora Online better. Join the discussions in our forum, join our community calls every Thursday at 12pm CET, translate strings on Weblate, file bug reports or feature requests on GitHub and spread the word on Collabora Online!
The Collabora Online SDK ⚙️
The Collabora Online SDK describes the main methods that allow you to interact with different Collabora Online components. Find installation guides, frequently asked questions, Post Message API and documentation on exiting integrations and on how to create new ones. This year we continued to add to our information to enable better integrations and clearer guidance.
It has been an exciting year here at Collabora Productivity, and we are so grateful to everyone who has been involved in 2023, and indeed for the past ten years – customers, partners, staff, and the community. We couldn’t have achieved any of these things without everyone working together so well. We have big plans for 2024 and are anticipating an even more exciting year ahead. We look forward to sharing it with you!
Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us, if you’d like to partner with us, or to download Collabora Online. Thank you for the great support this year. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
News by Collabora Directly into your Inbox 📨
Keep up to date with our public newsletter. If you would like to receive regular updates with all the news and updates about Collabora Online, Collabora Office and future events, please sign up to our newsletter.
Professional PDF Export Features in Collabora Online
PDF, the Portable Document Format, is currently the most important exchange format for finalised documents. Its major advantages include platform independence and consistency in the presentation of content. A significant proportion of the text documents created in Collabora Online (and of course a large proportion of presentations and a not inconsiderable proportion of spreadsheet extracts) are exported in precisely this format after completion. Collabora Online offers you the range of professional settings and selection options that you are used to from a professional office application package on the desktop. In this article on the subject, we will introduce you to some of the PDF export options and explain some of the most important features.
1. General Export Settings
The PDF export options can be accessed in the NotebookBar (the “Tabbed View”, the standard Collabora Online UI with the division into tabs) via the “Export as” button in the “File” tab. They appear immediately after selecting the filename of the PDF to be exported. In the compact view, the PDF export option can also be found under the ‘File’ tab. In this case, it appears as a drop-down list.
1.1 Image settings influence the file size of the exported PDF
The first Export Options tab provides a number of general settings. You can select whether to export the entire document as a PDF, a specific number of pages or only a selected range of pages using the ‘Range’ option. The Image settings allow you to specify the image quality in the exported PDF. The two radio buttons allow you to choose between lossless and compressed export of image content. The degree of compression can also be set as a percentage. The DPI of the image content can also be selected here. DPI stands for “dots per inch” and refers to the resolution or image density of a photo or graphic. 300 DPI is the standard for print products; web content is usually exported at 75 DPI due to the smaller file size. Image settings have a major impact on the file size of an exported PDF and are the most important control for adjusting the file size of large PDF documents.
1.2 Adding a watermark
The “Watermark” function allows you to add a simple watermark to the exported PDF. Please note that the text entered here will only be visible on the exported PDF and not on the original text document. If you wish to add a watermark to the editable original document, you can do so using the “Watermark” function in the “Layout” tab.
2. Define Initial View of the PDF
2.1 How to Define Panes in the PDF
In this tab, you can define various settings that affect the initial display of the exported PDF. The “Page only” option exports the content of the document without adding any elements to it, practically in the same form as the source document in Collabora Online. The “Outline and page” option, on the other hand, creates a PDF file that includes bookmarks and page content. The “Thumbnails and page” options create a thumbnail view in addition to the page content during export. The “Open on page” function can be used to specify the page on which the exported file will be opened in a PDF reader.
2.2 Set the Display Size
The options in this category allow you to specify the display size in the PDF Reader. The “Standard option” creates a file in which the page content is displayed without changing the scale. The “Window size” option ensures that the scale of the initial display of the PDF page will fit completely into the window of the reader. The “Window width” option ensures that the scale is adjusted so that the page of the exported PDF takes up the full width of the Reader. The “Fit visible” option creates a PDF file that displays the text and graphics on the page zoomed to fit the width of the Reader window, while the “Zoom Factor” option allows you to manually configure the initial zoom factor of the PDF.
2.3 Specifying the Display Size
The Default option creates a PDF file in which the pages are displayed according to the layout settings of the viewer software. The “Single page” option creates a PDF file in which the content is displayed in a page-by-page structure. If you select “Continuous”, the content of the PDF will be displayed in one continuous, long vertical column – similar to a web page. The “Continuous” option ensures that the pages are displayed side by side in a continuous column. The default setting for multi-page documents is that the first page is displayed on the right, but this can be changed by selecting the “First page is on the left” checkbox.
3. Configure the User Interface
3.1 Configure Window Settings
The settings in the “User Interface” tab allow you to make further configurations that affect the appearance of the exported PDF file. For example, the ‘Window options’ allow you to use the “Fit window to first page” option to create a PDF file that is displayed in a window that displays the entire first page when opened. You can also choose to “Centre window on screen” so that the PDF is displayed in the middle of the screen in the reader, or you can choose to open it in full-screen mode and display the document title. Of course, you can combine the window options as you wish.
3.2 Slide Transitions Available in Exported PDF
The “Transitions” feature is only available in the presentation module. It allows you to make the transition effects of your presentation available in the exported PDF. When exporting text documents or spreadsheets, this option is greyed out and cannot be selected.
3.3 Deactivating User Interface Elements
The options in the “User interface options” area allow the exported PDF file to be displayed in Reader without certain user interface elements. For example, the menu, toolbar or window controls can be hidden.
Try even more features in the free Collabora Online Demo
This article only scratches the surface of the many PDF export features in Collabora Online. The export options include additional settings for accessibility checking, links and security. Would you like to try out these features? You can do so by accessing the free Collabora Online demo!
Interested in learning more about the development of PDF features? Check out our YouTube channel for the latest technical talks from Collabora developers.
Find out more about Collabora Office & Collabora Online
Collabora Productivity created Collabora Online, a powerful online office suite, which you can integrate into your own infrastructure. It prioritises your digital sovereignty and provides you with all the tools to keep your data secure, without compromising on features. Collabora provides a wide range of products, as well as consulting services for enterprises and governments. Powered by the largest team of certified LibreOffice engineers in the world, Collabora is a leading contributor to the LibreOffice technology community. Collabora Office for Desktop and Collabora Online provide a business-hardened office suite with long-term support. Collabora’s multi-platform policy is completed with Collabora Office for iOS, Android, and Chrome OS. Collabora Productivity is a division of Collabora, the global software consultancy dedicated to providing the benefits of Open Source to the commercial world, specializing in mobile, automotive and consumer electronics industries. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Mastodon, LinkedIn and YouTube.
In our exploration of how Collabora Online empowers various sectors, we’ve already uncovered its pivotal role in government initiatives and educational institutions. Now, let’s delve into how Collabora Online extends its capabilities to strengthen the digital sovereignty of military and national defence infrastructure. Just as we seamlessly integrate with the workflows of governments and elevate the educational experience, Collabora Online stands ready to meet the unique demands of military applications. From on-premise hosting anywhere in the world to robust data security and interoperability, Collabora Online emerges as a steadfast ally in the strategic landscape of military and national defence operations.
1. Host Anywhere in the World
Collabora Online offers unmatched flexibility in deployment. Whether in a remote desert outpost, a naval vessel, or a submarine with no possibility of a reliable connection to a traditional cloud, Collabora Online proves to be the best and only secure solution. This capability is vital for military operations that demand collaborative access to documents, with real-time editing, but without dependency on any third party infrastructure system. Sensitive data can be securely shared, whilst always staying within secure boundaries with Collabora Online.
Furthermore, with our new Collabora Online Controller, deployment and management in a Kubernetes cluster in a container on the battlefield is now easier than ever.
2. Data Security and Privacy
Perhaps an obvious point, but seemingly overlooked in many cases. Governments are rightfully concerned about data security and privacy, especially in military and defence applications. In this arena, Collabora Online stands out as the only solution with real-time collaborative editing and the highest levels of security (find out more here). Its on-premise hosting capability ensures that sensitive information remains within the control of national defence authorities, removing dependence on third-party services with potential security or jurisdictional concerns.
3. Open Source Code for Unmatched Adaptability
The open-source nature of Collabora Online empowers military applications with unparalleled adaptability. Its interoperability with other systems, both proprietary and open source, enables seamless collaboration and data exchange. Additionally, our out-of-the-box source code escrow means your software is continually maintained, whilst the ability to customize and modify the source code ensures that Collabora Online aligns precisely with the unique needs and requirements of military and national defence institutions.
4. Cost-Efficiency in Defence Operations
It is no secret that cost-efficiency is a top priority for governments, which has a direct effect on military and defence spending. Collabora Online offers a cost-effective solution without compromising on quality. By reducing licensing costs associated with proprietary software, governments can allocate resources more efficiently without losing access to a powerful and fully-featured office suite for document creation, editing, and collaboration.
As we continue to empower organisations in their journey toward digital sovereignty, Collabora Online stands as the reliable partner for military and national defence applications, offering control, adaptability, and security in an ever-evolving landscape.