Collabora Office 6.4 Released

Cambridge, August 4th, 2020 – Today we release Collabora Office 6.4 providing businesses and professionals with the best features, interoperability, LTS and custom support in open source while respecting user privacy and company data security. Changes in Collabora Office 6.4 also support new and enhanced features in Collabora Online.

Excellent Interoperability and World Class Support

Collabora Office 6.4 offers excellent interoperability with all major office formats. Import text documents, spreadsheets and presentations from MS Office files or the Open Document Format and save them just as easily. We maintain the world’s largest team of certified LibreOffice developers and offer our customers a long-term supported version of LibreOffice. Version branch 6.4 of Collabora Office will be supported until August 2023 at least.

New Features in Version 6.4

In addition to improving performance and interoperability, Collabora Office 6.4 brings a number of practical improvements to your work. The newly implemented functions can be found all over the suite. The following are some outstanding examples.

 

Adding Visible Signatures to Existing PDF Files

Collabora Office already had the capability to add a digital signature to an existing PDF file. This still works the same. That signature however is (and was) only visible on the status bar and in file properties; there is no visible signature in the PDF file. Now in Collabora Office 6.4 adding a visible signature has been made possible. You start this new feature by selecting the PDF file with File > Digital Signatures > Sign existing PDF.

 

Addding visible signatures to existing PDF files
Ad visible signatures to existing PDF files

Read all details in this blog post.

 

Send Encrypted PDF Files with Mail Merge

One of the very handy and well established features of Collabora Office Writer, is Mail Merge that directly sends out PDF files. In version 6.4 this function has been extended so that you now can send encrypted PDF files. This enhances the privacy options of your workflow. Find more details in our blog.

 

Encrypt your PDF when sending them with Mail Merge

 

Padded Numbering Up to 5 Characters

Padded Numbering allows you to work with list numbering using a prefix. This is now possible up to four zeros. The feature that was introduced in an earlier version was limited to prefixes of two zeros.

 

A Padded Numbering list with a prefix of two zeros in Writer

 

Set Distance of Shapes to the Bottom of the Page

It can be very handy to specify the vertical position of a shape in text documents by setting the distance at the bottom of the page content area. Until now, this was not possible, although you can do so with the distance at the top of the page content area. If you tried to do the same from the bottom, the shape would be pushed below the margin. Collabora Office 6.4 now fixes this. You can set a negative value for the position to the bottom of the page content area, and the shape will stay in that position. Also when for example the page size is changed, or when other content is added or moved. More details are described in this blog.

 

 

Export Larger Pages from Draw using PDF 1.6

Using PDF 1.6, exported PDFs can now be larger than 508 cm (200 inch). Before the size was limited because of the possibilities of the PDF 1.5 specification. Since PDF files from Collabora Office, or more specifically from Draw, can be used to create banners, a limitation of 5 meters only is of course, impractical. More background on this can be found in this blog.

 

Export large PDF from Draw

 

Semi-transparent Text in Writer

Collabora Office 6.4 supports semi-transparent text, as it is also supported by Microsoft Word for DOCX files. So this again represents an interoperability improvement. In this blog you can find more details.

 

Interoperability improvement. Semi-transparent text in Writer

 

And more…

Collabora Office is based on the stable LibreOffice branch with extra features and fixes. Collabora Office 6.4 has the capabilities as described in the LibreOffice 6.4 release notes, of which many have been added by our Collabora Productivity team. As an outstanding example, we feature the Full PDF Export for Spreadsheets.

Full-Sheet Previews option on the PDF Export Dialog
Full-Sheet Previews option on the PDF Export Dialog

 

About

Collabora Office is the LibreOffice-technology based suite for professional, mobile, and online use. Collabora Office 6.4 provides businesses and professionals with the best features, interoperability, LTS and L3 support.
Collabora is privileged to work with so many great contributors to the LibreOffice project and appreciates all the amazing work done by so many that is also included into Collabora Office 6.4. This, our annual release, contains much work that was contributed to LibreOffice 6.3 and then LibreOffice 6.4. These cover all manner of areas from significantly improved filters, performance improvements, 95+% of online features and improvements, rendering along with a powerful redaction feature.
Please do find the full credits here.

Migrate with our demo of Collabora Office 6.4

You can try Collabora Office 6.4 yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or just click the button below.

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Ad Visible Digital Signatures to Existing PDF Files in Collabora Office 6.4

Collabora Office already had the capability to add a digital signature to an existing PDF file. The PDF file was to be selected, starting with File > Digital Signatures > Sign existing PDF. This still works the same now. The file is then opened as read only in Draw and the button Sign Document on the notification bar, allows you to add a digital signature. That signature however is (and was) only visible on the status bar and in file properties. There is no visible signature in the PDF file.

Now in Collabora Office 6.4 it is possible to ad visible signatures too.

 

Adding a Visible Digital Signature

To achieve this, the procedure starts the same: select the PDF file with File > Digital Signatures > Sign existing PDF. Then, as the file is read only in Draw, choose File > Digital Signatures > Signature Line.
 
After opening the PDF for signing, again use File > Digital Signatures ..

The mouse pointer changes, and it is possible to drag a rectangle in the file. When the mouse is released, the dialog to select the signature appears.

 

When done, the notification bar now indicates the button Finish Signing. Click that and the digital signature will be confirmed. The rectangle, showing a picture and information about the signature, can be resized before signing is finished.

 

If needed, the signature image can be resized

After that, again all is read only – of course. It is possible however to add another signature, so that for example more people can sign.

 

Confirm signing the PDF file

Some more background details can be found in the developer blog by Miklos Vajna. Thanks to the Dutch Ministry of Defense in cooperation with Nou&Off who made this work by Collabora possible.

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Send Encrypted PDF files with Mail Merge

From now on the powerful Mail Merge feature will be even more useful: you can send encrypted PDF files directly from Collabora Office Writer!

A handy feature of Collabora Office Writer since long, is doing a mail merge that directly sends out PDF files. From now on you can make the PDF files encrypted, adding additional privacy option to your work. The feature will be available in Collabora Office 6.2-21 and 6.4, and has of course been pushed to the LibreOffice master branch as well. Thanks to Collabora for sponsoring this work and kudos for Gülşah Köse for doing the work. In this article we’ll show you how to set this up.

Mail merge preparations

Of course, you need to have done the usual preparations for mail merge. We’ll briefly show a few essential steps.

Set up the mail server

This allows you to directly mail the merged documents from Collabora Office.

  • Open (a file in) Writer.
  • Select Tools→Options → Collabora Office Writer → Mail Merge Email

And fill the fields like following (with your own information)

Filling in the user information for Mail Merge
  • Click the Server Authentication button and fill with your information and click OK.

If the first option is insufficient, then of course also fill in the other information.

Adding additional information for Mail Merge
  • From the Options dialog click the Test Settings button to see if your information is OK.

If so, you will see the following dialog. If not, check the information again.

Success! This dialog confirms the correct account settings
  • Click OK from the Options dialog. Then mail server should be set now.

Prepare the database / data source

Collabora Office can link to various data sources. In this case, of course an email address and a password to encrypt the PDF file must be provided by the database.

The simple table below, has fields / columns for emails and passwords.

Address data for Mail Merge can be compiled in a spreadsheet

You have to make sure that this data source is used.

  • Chose Edit→ Exchange Database…
  • Click View→Data Source to use that database in Collabora Office

Next steps are of course creating a template document with fields and content. It is not necessary that the email and password fields are in the template – you must select these later on.

Do the mail merge

  • To send the document use Tools→Mail Merge Wizard or click the icon on toolbar.

  • In the Wizard:
    1. Select Use current document and click Next
    2. Select E-mail message and click Next
    3. Click “Select the address list”. Select your sheet from the menu and click OK.
    4. Click “Finish”.

We are ready for sending documents.

  • Click the “Send Documents” icon from the toolbar
The Mail Merge icons can be activated via View > Toolbars > Mail Merge

Chose to save and send with password

As a last step, you will see the following dialog.

  • Chose “Send as Adobe PDF”
  • Then the password option will be available. Select it.
The final settings before your encrypted PDF will be sent

The password for each PDF file will be taken from the database of recipients, thus allowing the use of individual passwords.

  • Click the “Send Documents” button and wait for the process to finish.

That’s all. We hope you like this. 🙂

Test Collabora Office

If you want to learn more about our long term supported Collabora Office 6.2 (supported until December 2022 at least) and its possibilities and advantages for your organization, get info and a demo here!

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Collabora Office 6.4 Release Notes

This page provides you with all information on updates, features, and fixes of the 6.4 branch of Collabora Office. Collabora Office is the enterprise-ready and long term supported version of LibreOffice. It is available for Linux x86_64, Windows 32-bit, Windows 64-bit and macOS. Collabora Office 6.4 is based on the upstream LibreOffice 6.4 source code, where all our code is contributed to. If you want to try out Collabora Office you can request a free demo. Please also read about the support & services Collabora Productivity offers.

Released on August 4th, 2020

Major release of Collabora Office providing businesses and professionals with the best features, interoperability, LTS and custom support in open source as well as respecting user privacy and company data security. Find out more in the release announcement.

New in Collabora Office 6.4

  • PDF output of Mail Merge can produce password-protected PDFs. More information in our blog.

  • Adding visible digital signatures to existing PDF files in Draw
  • Set distance of shapes  to the bottom of the page
  • Export larger pages from Draw using PDF 1.6
  • Padded numbering in Writer. Now up to 5 characters. The previous version allowed prefixes with up to two zeros.

  • Semi-transparent text in Writer
  • Text search inside embedded PDF files in Draw

Searching for information about previous versions of Collabora Office? Please refer to the release notes of the 6.2 branch!

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Collabora Office 5.3 End of Life Announcement

Collabora Office 5.3 End of Life Announcement

After 3 years of maintenance Collabora Office 5.3 reached end of life. Collabora Productivity customers typically chose for a professional supported Collabora Office to benefit from fast implementation of features and improvements and for the long period of excellent maintenance. Collabora Office 5.3 has now been maintained for three years, compared to the 6 months of LibreOffice 5.3.

The facts of three years long term support

During its three-years-long life cycle Collabora Office 5.3. has accumulated an impressing number of improvements and fixes. We’d like to show you, what has happened since the first release in April 2017.

Over the 3 years we delivered:

  • 20 releases
  • 1170 patches (over the base of libreoffice-5-3)
    • 41 backported fixes found by OSS-Fuzz
    • 354 backported bugfixes that had a TDF bug number
    • all relevant security fixes (CVEs) in LibreOffice or in 3rd party libraries
  • a bunch of new features requested by our customers

All eyes on Collabora Office 6.0 and 6.2

With the end of life of version Collabora Office 5.3 our engineers are concentrating on the support of Collabora Office 6.0 (LTS supported until June 2021 at least) and the most recent version Collabora Office 6.2 (supported until December 2022 at least). If you want to learn more about the possibilities and advantages for your organization, get info and a demo here!

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