The new Collabora Office 23.05 brings more features, improved performance and increased interoperability
Cambridge, August 7, 2023 – We are happy to announce the new major release of Collabora Office 23.05.
Collabora Office, for Linux, Windows and Mac, is the enterprise version of the world’s most popular open-source office productivity suite, LibreOffice. It is the foundation for new versions of our online collaborative office, Collabora Online, and also powers our apps for iOS, Android and Chrome OS.
The enterprise office suite provides businesses and professionals a richly featured, secure document creation environment with Long-Term Support (LTS) and bespoke development services backed by decades of experience.
Collabora Office’s new release includes new features targeting three key areas: accessibility, interoperability and usability. Below you will find an overview of the exciting new features and improvements that are available in Collabora Office 23.05 and where you can download it.
Accessibility features are created to provide comfort to all users, for example, those who prefer to use just a keyboard, those who cannot see the screen very well or those who have impairments.
Dark Mode has seen over 40 bug fixes and improvements and further support for switching between dark and light mode manually.
To toggle dark mode on and off:
Along the top navigation bar select: Tools → Options Collabora Office → View → Appearance Mode: “System”, “Light”, “Dark”
For some time, users and organizations have faced a major challenge when trying to find an alternative to Microsoft’s widely-used productivity suite: the issue of file compatibility and interoperability. These improvements continue to build on our already solid base of excellent interoperability and are fully compatible across both the desktop and online versions of Collabora Office.
Document themes are predefined formatting settings that you can apply to a whole document to easily change and re-purpose its appearance, add your own branding and give it a consistent feel. They usually include a combination of specific colours and fonts for heading, subheadings and body text. When the formatting is changed within the theme, it will change across all parts of the document following that formatting.
Themes also allows the user to choose between multiple default looks of objects when inserting and changing, which are derived from the current theme.
To apply a document theme:
Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme’ Select the theme you’d like to apply Press ‘Ok’
To create a document theme
Select on the top bar ‘Format → Theme → Add’
From here you can define colours for each part of your document.
Multi-page Floating Tables in Writer
This new feature is a combination of two existing capabilities. Multi-page tables and floating tables. Multi-page tables are tables than span their content over more than one page. Floating tables are tables inside a floating frame. This allows you to wrap text around them, which is particularly useful for brochures. Previously, it was not possible to combine these two features.
Floating frames used to work only on a single page. Now you can create floating tables that span across multiple pages. It improves interoperability with Microsoft’s OOXML format. It also significantly improves interoperability with tables that have been accidentally floated by users in Microsoft Office – often by just adjusting table sizing and positioning. This is frequently a problem in mis-designed Government forms – where tables are used for rendering borders, these should render and be editable with this update.
If you are interested in the complex technical challenges behind this feature, we encourage you to take a look into the series of posts by developer Miklos Vajna. There’s also a very insightful talk presented at COOL Days 2023 on YouTube. This feature is is still under active development, with some minor issues on specific use-cases to be ironed out, but you can make use of it in Collabora Office 23.05 now.
Compact View of Pivot Tables
Pivot Tables are a flexible and powerful analysis tool for mixed data sets. Collabora Office can create and import Pivot Tables. The feature had first been introduced to in early 2021 together with numerous statistical tools. Meanwhile, the feature has seen further interoperability improvements. Collabora Office Calc is now able to preserve the more recent default compact Pivot Tables created in Excel. In addition to the more accurate visual representation, this improvement also avoids incorrect cell references.
Exciting improvements have been made to the under-the-hood renderer! Our rendering engine has been enhanced and can now handle even more complex gradients. You can now turn up the visual appeal of your document by incorporating multi-stop gradients into shapes, borders, and other elements. This update is essential for anyone who works with intricate graphics – bringing improvements and better interoperability for existing documents and making it easier to edit more complex designs and graphics.
Improved Frame Anchoring and Position
Collabora Office 23.05 includes improved compatibility with older document-framing descriptions including better positioning for frame handling, better support for combining/splitting frames and overlapping frames, fixes to some cases where parent styles were ignored, and fixes to avoid UI anchor changes that caused movement on the page.
64-bit Zip Support
The Zip64 standard extends numerous internal limitations in the XLSX and ODS formats used to compress documents. While the old zip limitations are enough for most practical user cases, documents with enormous amounts of content embedded could occasionally run into such limits. With support for Zip64 included in 23.05, editing and working with huge spreadsheets is now possible in Collabora Office. Zip64 also serves as a replacement – replacing the older standard for smaller files.
Zip64 support makes for exciting news for all, whether you’re a pro handling massive documents or a casual user who will surely benefit from the interoperability improvements! Everyone can expect improvements across the board.
Keyboard Navigation through Forms
You can use the tab key to circularly navigate through content controls and fieldmarks. The modern content controls have a tabIndex field, which allows for precise ordering of keyboard navigation. The tabIndex also allows a control to be skipped – which is useful to avoid getting stuck in rich text controls (since the tab key needs to insert a tab character in that case). Form developers can specify the tabIndex via the content control properties UI.
Page Number Wizard
A wizard dialogue box has been added, combining inserting the required headers, footers, and page number fields into a single, easy to use, familiar dialog for users. This features all the common alignment options, support for a variety of languages, and a preview.
Simply select ‘Insert → Page Number...’
and you will see a dialogue box appear which enables you to customise the positioning, alignment and style of page numbers, along with a preview. There are a variety of supported languages available.
To remove page numbers, simply delete the page number in one of the footers and it will remove the page numbers on all pages.
Other New Features
- New ‘plain text’, ‘combo box’ and titles and tags options in Content Controls.
- Added support to open multi image TIFF files.
- Auto fitting text scaling algorithm has been changed so it works similar to MS Office.
- Categorized link targets when linking to a presentation.
Collabora has invested significantly in bringing a host of new features and functionality to this latest release and contributes a vast majority of the Collabora Office code. However, we want to acknowledge all of our friends and colleagues in the wider LibreOffice community who helped to contribute not only to this, but also to the underlying LibreOffice Technology upon which Collabora Office, CODE and Collabora Online are built.
Here are some new features contributed by the LibreOffice community.
New optional hyphenation settings are available to give rules for adjusting text flow. You can now limit hyphenation within paragraphs, set a minimum word length for hyphenation and opt to not hyphenate the last word of a paragraph.
This work was done by László Németh, NISZ.
Change Tracking in Numbered Lists
When making changes within numbered lists, the numbering has now been fixed to show actual and original numbers within the document.
Table Style Design Support
You can now modify table styles and create new ones in Impress and Draw. Modified styles are saved into documents, and can be shared via templates. You can access this function by right-clicking on a design in the Table Design Sidebar panel.
This work was done by Maxim Monastirsky.
Other community wins include:
- Improved positioning of glyphs.
- Easy sheet searching dialog in Calc.
- and many, many more commits from LibreOffice 7.4, LibreOffice 7.5 and LibreOffice 7.6.
About Collabora Productivity
Collabora Productivity is a leading provider of innovative software solutions, catering to the needs of individuals and businesses worldwide. With a focus on usability, performance, and security, Collabora Office and Online empower users to accomplish their goals efficiently and effectively.
Collabora Office is the latest enterprise release of our desktop office suite based on LibreOffice Technology, for professional, mobile, and online use. Collabora Office 23.05 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 outstanding work done by so many that is included into Collabora Office 23.05. Our annual release, contains code that was contributed to LibreOffice 7.4, 7.5 and 7.6. For a deep dive on all details and credits, please do take a look at the release notes.
It’s easy to migrate to Collabora Office 23.05 or try Collabora Office 23.05 for yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or download on the Windows or Mac App store.
If you would like to help test out the very latest Collabora Office versions before official release, you can download the development snapshots.