Gutter Margins and PPTX import improvements available in Collabora Office 6.4-33

Version 6.4-33 of Collabora Office introduces the new Gutter Margins feature developed by Collabora to the desktops and includes several fixes regarding the PPTX import, improving the way Collabora Office handles shaped Bitmaps.
The latest developments around our business-hardened and supported LibreOffice distribution are documented inside the release notes. Learn more about how Collabora Office can help you to control your data and business in our 6.4 announcement; or order a free demo!

 

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Improving printed publications with Gutter Margins

Collabora Office 6.4-33. Add Gutter Margins to text documents

The Gutter Margin feature has first been published in Collabora Online 6.4.6. The new Writer feature adds an extra space to the side margin, top margin, or inside margins of documents. The gutter margin makes sure that the text of a printed publication is not obscured by the binding. Since the Gutter Margins feature is also available in Microsoft Word, this feature is an interoperability improvement, too.

How to use Gutter Margins

Access the Gutter Margin feature via the menu option Format > Page Styles… and select the page tab. Alternatively, you can access the Page Style though a right-click or via a left-click on the style button in the status bar at the bottom. Inside the Page Style dialog you will find several new options to adjust the size and the position of the gutter.

Gutter Margins: The new settings are available inside the Page Style dialog

 

PPTX import improvements for shaped bitmaps

Collabora Office 6.4-33 includes improvements on the PPTX import of shaped images

Collabora Office 6.4-33 includes various code stability fixes and improvement regarding the import of shaped bitmap images created in MS Office. Earlier, shaped bitmap graphics of PPTX presentations could be rendered inaccurately, or in some cases the shape could get lost. Thank you to SUSE for sponsoring this work. This is fix is another great interoperability improvement that will also become available in the next version of LibreOffice.

Original: shaped image produced in MS Office
Earlier: Shaped images might not be imported accurately into LibreOffice & Collabora Office
Collabora Office 6.4-33: true to the original PPTX import of shaped images

 

Read more about Collabora Office 6.4

Read all about the new Collabora Office 6.4. Or try it yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or simply click the button below.

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Collabora contributes help to make LibreOffice 7.1 great

The latest version of LibreOffice brings a range of enhancements. Many of the improvements are the result of the work of Collabora developers. We show you a selection of these contributions below, but for a complete overview and full community credits you can checkout the LibreOffice Release Notes.

 

More attractive Objects with new Blurry Shadows

Shadows used to be rendered as solid copies of objects. The new Blur option adds more realistic shadows to objects. The feature is available through the Shadows tab in the Area dialog or directly through the Sidebar. This feature was developed during a GSoC20 project by Ahmad Ganzouri mentored by the Collaborans Tomaž Vajngerl and Miklos Vajna. Several refinements were implemented by Collabora later on.

 

Business Ready and Online!

Collabora loves LibreOffice and is glad to be a major contributor to the LibreOffice ecosystem. Of course we offer business ready versions for the desktop – Collabora Office – with LTS and SLA serving your business needs, also to retain control over your ICT.
And for online collaboration, we are leading the development of Collabora Online – built on top of LibreOffice. Get more info or a demo.

Further significant SmartArt improvements

Collabora is constantly adding improvements to the import of SmartArt objects from PPTX. Some of these were already present in Collabora Office 6.4 and also in Collabora Online 6.4. The latest developments by Miklos Vajna are now implemented in LibreOffice 7.1. Find all the technical details in Miklos’ last corresponding blog entry and the one before that.

 

Much faster Find & Replace

Many of Collabora’s contributions are aimed at enhancing the performance of LibreOffice and Collabora Office. Often this streamlining is the work of Collaboran Noel Grandin. For this release, it has resulted in a 50 percent performance improvement in the Find & Replace function of Writer. Performance improvements in Calc include spell checking, by Dennis Francis, and Autofilter, by Luboš Luňák and Eike Rathke of Red Hat.

 

Add visible digital signatures to existing PDF files

It is now possible to add visible digital signatures to existing PDF files. Earlier, this had been limited to invisible signatures. We first introduced this feature with the release of Collabora Office 6.4. Find all the technical details for this implementation in Miklos Vajna’s development blog.

 

NotebookBar now shows preview of Styles

Another new feature, that makes working with styles easier, is the Styles Preview widget that has been added to the NotebookBar. Nice work by our colleague Szymon Kłos.

 

Many more Contributions

LibreOffice 7.1 includes many more contributions by Collabora. For example: Writer now supports anchoring shapes relative to the bottom of the page; an issue in the formula input box which had occurred in Calc during the freezing of rows/columns was resolved; templates in Writer are now locale-independent; handling of cached field results in Writer has been improved. We would like to say: a big thanks to all our partners and customers helping us to make this work possible! Find out more about all the new features and improvements in the LibreOffice 7.1 Release Notes.

 

Discover Collabora Office

Collabora Office is the LibreOffice-technology based suite for professional, mobile, and online use. Collabora Office 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. You can test the latest version of Collabora Office yourself! Just head to the Collabora Office page and request your demo today, or just click the button below.

 

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Collabora Online 6.4.4 – making presentations more beautiful with shadowed tables

Collabora Online 6.4.4 is adding the handling of shadows for tables in Impress

Besides various performance improvements, Collabora Online 6.4.4 also brings a few new features. You can now add shadows to the tables in Impress, enhancing your presentations and also improving the interoperability with Microsoft PowerPoint documents. Furthermore, Collabora Online now supports the latest ODF 1.3 format and all its improvements. Have a look at the 6.4 release notes for a detailed overview of this important update.

How to add shadows to tables in Impress

When a table is selected, you can access the new feature through the Tables Properties button on the Tables tab – or in the menu Table for the Classic Toolbar. Inside that dialog choose the Shadows tab and mark the Use Shadows checkbox to activate the feature.

The shadow option is available through Table Properties in the Tables tab

 

To customize the appearance of the shadow, you can:

  • specify the direction,
  • choose a colour from the various palettes the colour picker,
  • set the distance from the object,
  • and define the percentage of the transparency of the shadow.

 

 

About Collabora Productivity

Collabora Productivity is the driving force behind putting LibreOffice in the cloud, providing Collabora Online and a range of products and consulting to enterprise and government. Powered by the largest team of certified LibreOffice engineers in the world, it is a leading contributor to the LibreOffice codebase and community. Collabora Office for Desktop and Collabora Online provide a business-hardened office suite with long-term, multi-platform support. 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, visit www.collaboraoffice.com or follow Collabora Office on Twitter .

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Powerful spreadsheet features arrive for tablets

 

Pivot Tables, Managing Names and Statistical Tools and more available for tablets in Collabora Office 6.4.3

Version 6.4.3 brings features for working with spreadsheets on Android tablets of iPads. You can now insert or edit Pivot Tables, Define and Manage Names and use and use the powerful Collabora Office Statistical Tools. Writer gains the ability to Insert Bookmarks and Reference Fields. Please be aware, that these new features can currently not be accessed through the UI on phones. However, many UI and UX improvements have been implemented in this version, making the apps both easier to use and fun to work with. Find a description of the new Calc features in our earlier released Collabora Online 6.4.3 announcement.

 

Staged releases on Android devices

Since the upgrade to the new major branch Collabora Office 6.4 for mobile, we moved to a staggered release schedule. This means that new versions are made available to users gradually. Version updates will be rolled-out to users in sequential waves, so some will see version 6.4.3 sooner than others.

 

Available on Chromebooks

Together with the update of our mobile apps version 6.4.3 of Collabora Office is now also available for Chrome OS. Users of Chromebooks are entitled to all the above mentioned features. Since Collabora Office for Chrome OS is distributed via the Play Store, it is also available as a staged release.

 

Download Collabora Office 6.4.3

Collabora Office is available through the Play Store and App Store. We also provide the latest .apk for Android! Collabora Office is also available on F-Droid via a third-party repository to add.

 

About Collabora Productivity

Collabora Productivity is the driving force behind putting LibreOffice in the cloud, providing Collabora Online and a range of products and consulting to enterprise and government. Powered by the largest team of certified LibreOffice engineers in the world, it is a leading contributor to the LibreOffice codebase and community. Collabora Office for Desktop and Collabora Online provide a business-hardened office suite with long-term, multi-platform support. 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, visit www.collaboraoffice.com or follow Collabora Office on Twitter .

 

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Thank you for your support in 2020!

 

It is a good tradition at the end of the year to reflect on what we have achieved as a team and together with our partners and the community, and remember with gratitude all the hard work that so many have put in.

Of course, this year was marked by the worldwide Corona pandemic. Early during the outbreak, we had published a statement on how far Covid-19 affected our work. Even though our structure – most of our team works remotely from the home office – meant that we were much less affected by difficulties than other companies, we too have friends, colleagues and relatives whose health were affected and also have kids we had to homeschool this year. Nevertheless, this has not affected our customer’s support, and there has been a significant up-tick in interest from people who want to collaborate on their documents without surrendering their data.

Despite all challenges, 2020 has been a very productive year at Collabora. We released important major releases for all our products – Collabora Online actually even saw two major releases, and Collabora Office arrived on Android and Chrome OS. Although conferences have only been possible online since March, we could present ourselves and our work quite well there. By moving to GitHub, a lot of fresh air and many dedicated people got in touch with Collabora Online.

Here is a summary of what we achieved together!

Collabora Online – two major releases, many improvements

The year 2020 saw two major releases of Collabora Online introducing handy new features and substantial UI and UX improvements.

Collabora Online 4.2 brings the feature rich Sidebar

In March, we introduced the Sidebar to Collabora Online 4.2. The versatile Sidebar hosts many of the most used features and provides a much improved user experience for the PC browser.

A version packed with new features

With Collabora Online 4.2 we also introduced an enhanced Colour picker with Conditional Formatting and the Function Wizard in Calc. We also added rich copy/paste, made working with images and tables much more easy and added the possibility to configure the Table of Contents. Find all the details in the Collabora 4.2 announcement.

 

The new colour picker
The Function Wizard in Calc
Collabora Online table of contents
Rich table of contents in Writer

 

Exciting 4.2 updates throughout the year

Many updates followed throughout the year:

  • April: brought improved PDF handling and support of Asian date formats in Calc in version 4.2.2.
  • May: Support for dropdown lists in form fields in ODT & DOCX and other text file formats and the handling of tabstops directly on the ruler in version 4.2.3
  • June: Multiple slide selection on slide pane, handling of tab stops, improved word count on phones and many other features arrive in version 4.2.4

Find all the exciting details in the Collabora Online 4.2 release notes!



Collabora Online 4.2.9: New options in comment threads


Collabora Online 4.2.12: Edit Chart titles from the Sidebar

 

Collabora Online 6.4 introduces the NotebookBar

 

In November, we released Collabora Online 6.4. This version introduces the (optional) new NotebookBar with its well-organized tabs and the possibility to collapse it to save space.

 

Collapse the NotebookBar for more space

 

This version also included leap in version numbering. This aligned with our desktop version and now reflects more accurately the level of development, since much of the technology is shared by both products.

 

Collabora Online 6.4 added many new features like the possibility to freeze panes in Calc, many interoperability improvements like, transparent text (in both Impress and Writer) and gradient backgrounds and better SmartArt import in Impress. Find all the details in our announcement.

Freeze rows & columns in Calc
Gradient backgrounds in Impress
Annotations in PDF documents

 

Collabora Office sees a new major release and powerful updates

In August 2020, we released Collabora Office 6.4. Our business-hardened and long term supported LibreOffice derivative brought a number of practical improvements to the workflow on desktops.

Security, encryption, PDF – new features on the Desktop

Naturally we had back-ported many of the new features to our supported Collabora Office 6.2 release as updates.

Padded Numbering was one of the results of this year’s hack week at Collabora and premiered in Collabora Office 6.2-9. Later this year it became part of Collabora Office 6.4 and LibreOffice.

Collabora Office 6.2-9: Padded numbering

In July, introducing the possibility to send encrypted PDF with Mail Merge, we added a privacy option to Collabora Office 6.2.-21. This also became available in Collabora Office 6.4 and LibreOffice.

Collabora Office 6.2-21: Send encrypted PDF with Mail Merge

Security features and PDF handling are focus topics. The option of adding visible digital signatures to PDF arrived in Collabora Office 6.4 in August.

Collabora Office 6.4 PDF signing.

Collabora implemented the Vulkan-capable rendering using the Skia library in LibreOffice 7.0. Download the slides from Luboš Luňák’s talk on this!

LibreOffice 7.0 Vulkan-capable rendering arrived

 

Collabora Office for iOS & Android

After the highly acclaimed release for iOS last year, we released Collabora Office for Android in February 2020.

Collabora Office for Android and iOS
Collabora Office brings rich editing experience to phones

This is the first time a fully function mobile office suite based on LibreOffice technology became available for Android. We have documented the long road to this point and the many supporters involved in the Collabora Office for Android and iOS credits.

An attractive layout & rich in features

Copy & paste rich text objects
Sheet editing options in context menu
Collabora Office for iOS and Android text document
Editing your text file
Collabora Office for iOS and Android presentation
Editing the content of a presentation

Thanks to the success of our mobile apps, we have expanded the LibreOffice user base by half a million mobile installations, as can be read in our annual LibreOffice infographic.

Adding more features to the mobile devices

Throughout the year we kept adding important new features to the mobile devices like tab stops & page set-up panels, improved word count, support for Asian fonts, and the possibility to open password-protected documents.

Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.3: Page setup panel for text files on phones
Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.4: Improved Word count on mobile devices
Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.6: Writer document with different Asian fonts
Trying to open password protected files on Collabora Office for Android.
Trying to open password-protected files on Collabora Office for Android.

Version 6.4 – Another major release for mobile devices

The work on our mobile apps had its climax in the release of Collabora Office 6.4 for Android & iOS in November, which brought new features (e.g. gradient backgrounds, transparent text) from Collabora Online to mobile devices and introduced the NotebookBar to tablets.

 

 

Collabora Office for Android & iOS 6.4: The NotebookBar becomes available on tablets
Collabora Office for Android 6.4: The first Darkmode elements are beeing introduced

Collabora Office for Android & iOS are now available via the Play Store & App store. Additionally, we also offer an .apk file for download and made the repository available on F-Droid.

Collabora Office ships on Chromebooks

After making Collabora Office available on Android, this summer, we completed our multiplatform strategy by making Collabora Office available for Chromebooks as well.

The Chrome OS version is also available via the Play Store and is now also available as version branch 6.4. Interested in the technical background? Check that out in this talk:

from Jan Holesovsky’s talk “Chrome OS as a new platform” at oSLO2020 available on YouTube

Download the slides of “Chrome OS as a new platform” by Jan Holesovsky at oSLO2020

CODE 6.4 and a growing vibrant community on GitHub

 

In September, we released the Collabora Online Development Edition 6.4. This showcased all the cool new features, interoperability improvements and the new NotebookBar that would two months later become available in the enterprise edition of Collabora Online 6.4.

Collapsed NotebookBar

 

Open NotebookBar

Use the hamburger menu to access more options

The release of CODE 6.4 also marked the beginning of our initiative to lower the barriers to join the project. A few weeks later we announced moving the source code of Online to GitHub making it easier for interested people to get involved, and tackling some of the intriguing community marketing problems we faced.

The community rocks

This year we invested a lot of time, effort and passion to make Collabora Online & CODE a more accessible and fun project to work on. We created a forum for users to find support, many easy hacks and assigned developer Muhammed Kara as a community mentor, helping people getting on board. Why are we doing all this? Read about it in our FAQ!

 

Screenshot of GitHub Pulse for Collabora Online
Development Activity on Collabora Online GitHub Repository from November 27, 2020 to December 04, 2020

Regular round-ups and calls

Part of our efforts to grow a vital, transparent and welcoming community are Muhammet’s regular Community Round-ups published on our blog, as well as weekly community calls on Jitsi. We really appreciate all the new contributions we saw coming in this year from so many people, checkout their names & credits in the round-ups.

An engaged team of translators

Want to get involved in another way than contributing code? Join the engaged community of translators over on hosted Weblate to make Collabora Online available in more languages. Thank you to the dedicated team of translators.

Getting involved

It’s never been easier to get in touch with the project. You can ask questions in the Collabora Online forum or chat with us on Freenode, Matrix or Telegram or just drop us a mail at hello@collaboraoffice.com. Or use #cool_dev on Twitter or Mastodon to talk with us about Collabora Online on social media.

Important announcements, interesting figures

Our partner network hits 200

2020 has been an excellent year to close new partnerships. We now have can rely on over 200 partners from more than 50 countries, we help each other to promote FLOSS, privacy & digital sovereign solutions and re-invest the proceeds into creating great new software. Find a Collabora partner in a special field or area… or why not become a partner yourself!

CollaboraOffice.com available in 8 languages

This year, we dedicated a lot of effort to make our website and information about our product available to even more people. At this point collaboraoffice.com is available in English , German , Spanish , French , Traditional Chinese , Italian , Portuguese and Turkish . And we have only just begun…

 

Updated LibreOffice growth infographic 2020

We also updated our popular LibreOffice growth infographic. With some impressive numbers… Over 200M active LibreOffice users, over 50M pulls from the CODE Docker image, 500K installs of the Collabora Office mobile apps, and over 16K code commits from the whole community to LibreOffice. Have a look at the numbers!

 

Collabora Online as default in Nextcloud 19

In June, Nextcloud Hub 19 started to ship Collabora Online as the default office application, featuring an easy installation with just a few clicks.

Collabora Online with ownCloud Infinite Scale

In October we announced that Collabora will be integrating Collabora Online with ownCloud Infinite Scale.

Events and conferences 2020 – virtually different

Events were dominated by the global pandemic for most of the year. Sadly there were few opportunities to meet in person.

FOSDEM 2020

In February, FOSDEM 2020 could take place as the last big meeting of the open-source community with many presentations by Collabora developers.

FOSDEM 2020: Download “Bringing Collabora Online to your web app” by Michael Meeks
FOSDEM 2020: Download “LibreOffice turns 10 & what’s next” by Michaeal Meeks
FOSDEM 2020: Download “Integrate Collabora Online with web applications” by Andras Timar

Find all our FOSDEM talks in our playlist on YouTube and more slides for download in our blog.

oSLO 2020 – open SUSE & LibreOffice conference

The LibreOffice conference – this year co-organised by the open SUSE community – took place as an online event. Our team was involved with no less than 15 talks.

oSLO 2020: Download “Bringing The Notebookbar to Online” by Szymon Klos
oSLO 2020: Download “OOXML / PDF Digital Signing in Draw and elsewhere” by Miklos Vajna
oSLO 2020: Download “Implementing Vulkan-capable drawing using the Skia library” by Luboš Luňák

The talks are available in our playlist on YouTube and the complete set of slides can be found in our blog.

LibreOffice developement Workshop in Eskişehir

Collabora sponsored an impactful four-day LibreOffice development workshop during the Free Software Winter Camp at Anadolu University in Turkey. We wrote an article about the impressive results. Two participants of the workshop later went on to work GSoC projects for the LibreOffice project.

Google Summer of Code 2020

In addition to the Collabora Online community, our developers were very committed to this year’s Google Summer of Code. Read about the LibreOffice projects we mentored and the successful new implementations that resulted from these GSoC projects. Participants in the Google Summer of Code often become long-term contributors to the project.

 

Summary

In summary, it has been a busy year here at Collabora Productivity. This overview only sums up a small part of the great things we have been working on alongside the community. We have advanced our mission to make open-source rock; giving users privacy and businesses control over their data. We not only produced excellent results, but also had a good time working on these things – despite the challenging conditions that 2020 offered. If you’d like to get involved its easy to partner with us, buy from us, or get involved in the growing Collabora Online community. We have lots of plans in the pipeline for 2021 and hope there will be more possibilities to meet in person on conferences and on events. We would like to thank the whole team, particularly our great partners, and customers who make our work possible, and the community of developers and users who make it fun. We look forward to continuing the successful work with you in 2021! Have a very Happy Christmas & a peaceful New Year.

Thank You!

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