Six Reasons Why Collabora Online is the Best Microsoft Office Alternative

Microsoft Office has led the office productivity market for many years, but is now no longer the only option for your online document editing. Collabora Online is perfect for businesses who are looking for a modern and secure workspace.

Here are six reasons why Collabora Online is the best Microsoft Office alternative:

1. Excellent interoperability with major (and minor) file formats

If you can’t work with the files, then you aren’t much use as a file editor. Fortunately Collabora Online provides excellent interoperability with a wide range of file formats. DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, we’ve got you covered. In actual fact, we have greater interoperability between our online and offline editor than even Microsoft’s desktop and online editors offer (more about this coming in a future post, watch this space!). So rest assured, you’ll still have access to that legacy Microsoft Works file you still have lying around. Got an unusual client who likes everything sent to them in .docm? Not a problem. Need to import a FlatXML spreadsheet? With Collabora Online, you’ll have all the interoperability you need for your modern, or indeed legacy working environment!

2. Digital security and sovereignty

Collabora Online offers distinct advantages over Microsoft Office from a digital sovereignty perspective. First and foremost, Collabora Online is an open-source solution, providing transparency and giving organizations full control over their software stack. This allows users to verify and modify the source code, ensuring data privacy and security. Additionally, unlike Office 365 which operates on a cloud infrastructure managed by a single provider, Collabora Online can be deployed on-premise or in a private cloud, enabling organizations to maintain complete sovereignty over their data. This level of control enables full compliance with data protection regulations and safeguards against unauthorised access. By choosing Collabora Online, you can prioritise your digital autonomy and protect your data.

3. Collaborate effectively with anyone you chose

The clue’s in the name! Collabora Online allows you to collaborate, co-edit, review and track changes, add comments, and share your documents securely. Furthermore, Collabora Online gives you a whole range of security and permission settings, enforced server side, to ensure your data and the content of your documents, is always protected.

4. Great platform availability and ease of use

Whether you’re a Mac, Windows or Linux user, or you like to edit on desktop, mobile or your favourite modern browser, Collabora Online is available to offer you freedom of choice. Also, unlike the familiar alternatives, our browser-based and desktop applications have full interoperability since they share a common codebase. No more glitches when you try and edit that slide show online that you just had on your laptop.

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and with Collabora Online you won’t have to. With a familiar user-friendly interface, you’ll feel right at home and can skip costly retraining that might come with other alternatives.

5. No more vendor lock-in

Have you noticed the inexorable rise of Microsoft’s pricing structure, or new changes nobody asked for? We certainly have. Break free from vendor lock-in with Collabora Online! Unlike other tech giants, with Collabora Online you’re not tied to any one service provider. Integrate our secure office suite into your own solution and infrastructure, or with any of our 200+ partners, paying for as many services as you require. Want to switch to a hybrid cloud solution or fully on-premise down the line? Not an issue with Collabora Online.

6. Exciting Community Spirit

Did you know that by joining Collabora Online, you’re joining a huge community? Collabora Online was born out of the open-source world, long before crowdfunding or crowdsourcing was a thing, and we’ve stayed true to our roots. Alongside Collabora Online, we also offer Collabora Online Development Edition (or CODE for short) allowing everyone to enjoy the latest features and provide feedback. This vibrant and engaged community fosters a collaborative environment where users, developers, and enthusiasts come together to contribute, share knowledge, and drive the evolution of Collabora Online. The CODE community offers an opportunity to help others through forums, mailing lists, and dedicated channels. Furthermore, this community-driven ecosystem provides opportunity for contribution to the enhancement and expansion of Collabora Online’s features, compatibility and performance, giving you access to a support network and bespoke solutions Microsoft Office users can only dream of.

We could go on, but suspect you’re getting the message. Collabora Online is the best alternative to Microsoft Office, and if you ask us, is better than the current market leaders. Try the demo today at:

Great Response to the LibreOffice Development Workshop at Free Software Winter Camp 2020

Every Winter the Anadolu University in Eskişehir, Turkey, hosts a large Free Software Winter Camp. This year it took place from Jan 25 – Jan 28, 2020, covering over 50 different classes with more than 40 different topics, and close to 1500 participants tutored by over 100 instructors. One of those classes was the LibreOffice Development Workshop, sponsored by Collabora Productivity.

For the four days of intensive training 20 students from all over the country were accepted. While the workshop itself was free, the participants were expected to cover the costs for travel and accommodation. This year 16 students showed for LibreOffice Development Workshop given by Collabora’s Muhammet Kara – a number which was a significant increase compared to the number from the previous year!

The participants of the LibreOffice Development Workshop at Free Software Winter Camp 2020.

In order to be accepted, the students had to have knowledge in C++, the principals of object-oriented programming, and at least user-level experience on a GNU/Linux system. During the workshop the 16 participants got familiar with the processes and tools of LibreOffice development and bug fixing.

Within the four days workshop the students contributed 64 commits, documented in the LibreOffice wiki. Two memorable examples of contributions were an important improvement by Onur Yilmaz for the Automatic Redaction feature and a Python script to analyse the LibreOffice code-base for styling issues written by Batuhan Taşkaya.

Muhammet Kara reported, that the feedback from the participants was very positive:

“Almost all pointed out that they have improved their development skills, and they would like to continue contributing.”

We would like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation once again to the effort of Muhammet, the Linux Users Association of Turkey and Anadolu University for providing this exceptional training opportunity. We look forward seeing more contributions from that dedicated group of participants.

Are you searching for a interesting open source project to join? Remember, you’re really welcome to participate in CODE – the Collabora Online Development Edition.

Collabora supports Free Software Winter Camp 2020 in Eskişehir, Turkey

Twenty-one students have been selected to take part in the LibreOffice Development Workshop at the Anadolu University, Eskişehir, Turkey. It is held from Jan 25 to Jan 28 as a part of the Free Software Winter Camp 2020.

Collabora Sponsored LibreOffice Bootcamp in Ankara
Impression of the previous LibreOffice Bootcamp in Ankara

Collabora Productivity is one of the sponsors. Muhammet Kara, Collabora developer who is giving the LibrOffice training, explains that it’s not suitable for just every interested student.

“Of course enthusiasm is very important. But we also require students to have knowledge/experience with C++, and come with GNU/Linux installed on their laptops. And they will try to build LibreOffice before coming.”

This looks as a perfect match for students that followed for example the LibreOffice Bootcamp in Ankara… but there will be others for sure!
Muhammet tells about the program:

“During the camp, we will go through the usual stuff of getting started with LO development, code- structure, tips&tricks etc. And will work on bugs to gain hands-on experience.”

The accommodations will be provided by the Linux Users Association of Turkey, organizers of the event. Find details on the LibreOffice-wiki too.

Thanks Muhammet, Linux Users Association of Turkey and Anadolu University for making this possible!
Of course we wish the participants good luck, and keep an eye on github for LibreOffice or online 😉

Enthusiast students building LibreOffice – Report from Bootcamp in Ankara

Developing in C++ is not easiest thing you can do in ICT. But if you have some C++ knowledge and skills, it brings you great possibilities. What to think of building LibreOffice and working somewhere in the million lines of code? In Ankara, at the Hacettepe University’s Beytepe Campus, 40 students joining the LibreOffice Developer Bootcamp, just arrived at that point.

Muhammet Kara, Collabora Productivity developer, who gives the courses, tells:

We have finished the 5th session/week of the Bootcamp. So far, we did the following. The first four weeks we did C++ basics, and covered topics such as syntax, operators, data types, arrays, pointers, exceptions.. You name it. On week 2, 3, and 4 the students had to do three home works /assignments. In week 5 we looked at LibreOffice development: how it is organized, who are involved, tooling, habits. And of course: what is good about contributing to LibreOffice. The next week the students should have a complete building environment. So we’ll start the real development: working on easy hacks. More on that in the next report!

Collabora is really glad about the enthusiasm for LibreOffice development and happy to sponsor the Ankara Bootcamp.

The training program attracted much interest from the students side. In the first weeks, which were mainly about the basics of C++, were attended by 120 to 140 students were attending the course. The weekly plans, published on Muhammet Kara’s blog, show the ambitious amount of content they have been introduced to.  The LibreOffice Development Bootcamp was also widely noticed beyond the sphere of the Hacettepe University. The tweets posted on the topic generated many hundreds of interactions and over ten thousand views in the social network.

In week five the specific work on LibreOffice moved more into focus. It was discussed why it makes sense to contribute to it. 40 students took part in this phase of the bootcamp, a great number if you consider that it is not a mandatory course and the demands on the participants were very challenging. The weekly sessions will be given until the end of the semester, January 2020. We will keep you updated here and report about the next weeks of the LibreOffice Developer Camp in Ankara.


Collabora sponsoring LibreOffice Developer Bootcamp in Ankara

On November 13 more than 120 students in Ankara Hacettepe University’s Beytepe Campus joined the first session of the LibreOffice Developer Bootcamp, a course for students with interest in C++. There is a session every week, until the end of the semester.
Collabora Sponsored LibreOffice Bootcamp in Ankara


The announcement of the course was received with enthusiasm at Twitter!


The first sessions gave a broad introduction on the course, Free Software & Open Source, LibreOffice & Collabora and requirements for the course. And after that, really into development: installations & setup, different IDEs, git, gcc, clang and the basics of C++.




The instructor of this course, Muhammet Kara, recently also held a talk about Google Summer of Code. Starting from that point, then doing a project for LibreOffice, he grew to a developer working for Collabora.

After the first session, Muhammet tells “There were many enthusiastic participants, even some from outside the town. I’m sure that at the end of the course, there will be many students with pretty good skills in C++ and LibreOffice development.

This course in Ankara can be organized thanks to of course support of the Hacettepe University for the use of the amphitheater, Hacettepe ACM Student Chapter for the local/logistics organization, Collabora for sponsoring, and the enthusiasm and knowledge that Collabora developer Muhammet Kara is putting into it.

The weekly sessions will be given until the end of the semester, January next year. So if you’re motivated and love open source.. you may still be able to join 🙂 !