OpenOffice.org 3.0 Beta : A complete Office Suite

The public beta release of OpenOffice.org 3.0 is now available for download. You can install it along with your existing OpenOffice.org 2.4 installation. You don’t need to uninstall 2.4 to give 3.0 beta a try. 3.0 Beta has got some cool interface. Other than that some noticable features are:

  • You get a desktop icon to launch OpenOffice.org 3.0
  • Once you start you will see a Start Centre where you can select what you want to do, new fresh looking icons and a new zoom control in the status bar.
  • View multiple pages in Writer.
  • OpenOffice.org 3.0 supports Microsoft Office 2007 file formats (*.docx, *.pptx, *.xlsx etc.)
  • Calc now has a linear optimization solver. It finds a set of values that maximize or minimize an objective function while satisfying a set of constraints.
  • At some places you will see new theme, kind of glass effect.
  • The most sought feature in Impress : native tables is now available with 3.0. You will get some cool table designs as in Office 2007.
  • Instead of only 256 columns, now it supports 1024 columns.
  • 3.0 supports for spreadsheet collaboration through workbook sharing.
  • Numerous chart enhancements.
  • Improved crop feature in Draw and Impress.
  • And a good news for Mac OS X users, OpenOffice.org 3.0 will run without X11 with the look and feel of any other aqua application.
  • Read here to know more about what is new in OpenOffice.org 3.0.

About OpenOffice.org 3.0

Start Centre

In nutshell, OpenOffice.org 3.0 is an excellent release. Considering the fact that it is still in Beta, we may expect couple of other enhancements going forward.
For the ones who haven’t tried it yet, OpenOffice.org is a complete Office suite of applications like Microsoft Office and is available free of cost. Ubuntu and other Linux users get this by default with their distro.

If you are not a big fan of MS Office and haven’t got a free copy, then OpenOffice is the way to go. It is FREE and at least will save some $200 for you. You can install it with any operating system, Windows, Linux (already installed) and Mac OS X.  If you don’t want to install the beta version, then you can download the stable version of OpenOffice.org 2.4 from here.

Ubuntu 8.04 is released now

As I mentioned in my yesterday’s post, the Hardy Heron is finally released today. The Desktop Edition of Ubuntu 8.04 is a LTS (Long Term Support) and will be supported till 2011, while the server edition is supported till 2013.
Go and download Ubuntu 8.04 known as Hardy Heron.
Download/upgrade options:
Direct Download: http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/download
Torrent Options: http://releases.ubuntu.com/hardy/
Upgrade Option: http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/upgrading
Enjoy the latest Ubuntu Linux release 8.04. I am sure you will never wanna go back.

Ubuntu 8.04 LTS

Get Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron Shipped to your door

Ubuntu ShipIt is accepting pre-orders for 8.04 Hardy Heron, the latest Ubuntu release. Hardy will be released on 24th April, 2008. ShipIt will send you a CD free of cost, but it may take around 8-10 weeks. If you are not in hurry to get the Ubuntu Hardy Heron official CD for your collection and otherwise have a fast internet connection, then please prefer downloading it. I am listing both the options below:
Download : http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/download
Get it shipped : https://shipit.ubuntu.com/
Enjoy…!!! I already ordered mine…have you??? Remember, if you prefer to download and burn yourself, you can use a rewritable CD.

How to try Ubuntu without messing with your existing OS?

Now when you have 25 reason to use Ubuntu instead of Windows, then I am sure you will like to try it. How you do it is a question? And most probably you are afraid to mess around with your existing operating system.
I tell you what, it is very very simple and with Ubuntu 8.04 it is even simpler than ever. (Will be covered in a future post.)

  1. Download the Live CD *.iso image (after 24th April, 2008 for latest Hardy Heron) on your hard drive for your machine. (i386 if Intel processor and AMD 64 if AMD processor)
  2. Burn the image file to a CD or DVD with your choice of software Roxio, Nero or whatever. I will suggest using a RW (re-writable) disc so that if you don’t like it, you don’t waste a CD (chances are very low, but in case)
  3. You can even get it shipped to you free of cost through Shipit if you don’t even want to download.
  4. Insert the burnt Live CD in your CD drive.
  5. Restart your machine.
  6. Go to the system BIOS and change the booting option to CD/DVD drive. (You have to be quick to go to the BIOS, else you will end up booting your existing OS.) Generally you have to press F2, F8, Delete or some specific key to go to system BIOS. Refer your system manual.
  7. Boot Ubuntu from the CD.
  8. Ubuntu Live CD will load and give you a screen to select what you want to do further. (You might have to wait 2-5 minutes depending upon your system to see this screen.)
  9. Select ‘Try and Install Ubuntu’. Don’t worry it won’t load Ubuntu on your machine and you won’t lose any data.
  10. It will take another 2-3 minutes to give you a desktop.
  11. Now you are in Live session of Ubuntu OS. You can test your machine to see all your hardware works on it. You can play games and do lots of other stuff.
  12. If you like you can double-click on the ‘Install Ubuntu’ icon on the desktop. (Next post will elaborate on the install options.)
  13. You don’t have to install now, if you wanna try it for some days.
  14. To exit, just click ‘Quit’ and ‘Shut Down’ the system.
  15. Remove CD from the CD drive when prompted. Hit enter.
  16. Reboot to use your existing OS. No changes have been made to your system…right. Cool….
  17. Come back to this blog to see what you need to do to Dual boot your system keeping your existing OS. (Dual Boot : You will have option while booting to select which OS you want to boot from. You can select if you want Windows, Ubuntu, Mac or any other thing.)

    Hope this post helped you in trying Ubuntu for free without affecting your existing OS.

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    25 Reasons to use Ubuntu Linux instead of Windows

    Lots of people argue why I should use Linux (any distro, I prefer Ubuntu) when I am currently using Windows or Mac. Given a chance to select your choice of operating system (OS), people may prefer to use Linux than anything else. The other thing which prevents users using Linux is the hardware support which is not that good currently for Linux. But that is because we have been living in a world where Windows is being forced to everyone when they buy PC. That’s why hardware manufacturers are also forced to support Windows first than any other thing. But this support has increased tremendously over last couple of years. At the same time Linux community has developed itself in making Linux (Ubuntu in particular) more user friendly.
    Anyways that is an ongoing debate whether you should use Linux or Windows or Mac. And at some point it is a personal choice as well.
    I thought of collating some reasons which might make you think twice while buying another Windows PC. And if you currently use Linux, then please add a comment to this post, why you use Linux and which distro you use so that others can get more information about it:

    1. Ubuntu is Free and so any other Linux distro. (Saved ~ $250)
    2. You don’t have to buy Office (Word, Power-point, Excel etc.) separately. It comes with OpenOffice preinstalled. (Saved ~ $200)
    3. You don’t have to buy costly hardwares for the basic need. (RAM. Processor, HDD etc.)
    4. Ubuntu is more stable.
    5. You are free from Viruses so you don’t have to buy another upgrade of Norton or any other Antivirus software. (Saved ~ $75)
    6. When you have installed Ubuntu, you don’t have to install anything else to get you started with your productivity.
    7. You don’t have to wait for years for the bugs to get fixed. You can track them down in Ubuntu.
    8. You can update everything on your system with just one update manager. No need to run separate Update manger for all the softwares you installed. (Saves your system resources.)
    9. Don’t get tired restarting your computer all the time. You do it almost never with Ubuntu.
    10. You are free from Pirated softwares. With Ubuntu you can share it with as many people as you want and it is LEGAL.
    11. Don’t have to bother searching the web for new softwares. Ubuntu gets a whole lot of software free of cost to you.
    12. Play hundreds of games for Free.
    13. Your PC won’t get slower day by day. It happens in Windows only.
    14. Use MSN, AIM, ICQ, Jabber, Gtalk, Yahoo and many more with a single program. No need to install separate software for the same thing.
    15. Tired of managing multiple windows on your screen. You can use workspaces to manage your work.
    16. You old computer will get a second life. Because Ubuntu does not need those high resources as Windows.
    17. Jump into the next generation of desktop themes with Compiz fusion and all with lot less resources than Windows Vista.
    18. With Ubuntu, you are always free. Free as in Freedom and in Free Beer. Ubuntu is free and will always remain free. (Saves ~ $200 every 2 years when Microsoft releases a new version of its operating system and you have to buy it.
    19. All future upgrades of Ubuntu are provided free of cost. Upgrades are released every 6 months.
    20. Upgrades are installed automatically. You don’t have to bother about losing your data and redoing lots of personalization. *Edit* The updates are installed with your permission and only if you want them…not in the background without you knowing it. – Thanks freeber – A Ubuntu User
    21. You can tweak your desktop wallpaper or any other setting the way you want it. You can make it look like Windows or Mac (if you want.). You can even get the sidebar you were fascinated in Vista.
    22. You don’t have to defrag your hard disk every now and then to boost the performance. Ubuntu does it for you automatically.
    23. You don’t have to go to a shop to buy operating system. You can download it anytime you want it and burn it on a CD. You can even burn it on a re-writable CD to save some CDs.
    24. Thousand of user are there to help you with when you are stuck. Become a part of Ubuntuforums.
    25. You will get free and Long Term Support (LTS) for Ubuntu. Ubuntu 8.04 Desktop version also will get a LTS. (17 days to go for the release version.)

    I think these many reason are enough to get you started with Ubuntu or any other Linux flavor. Keep visiting this blog for more information on Linux, Ubuntu in particular.  If you want to try it now you can download Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron (Beta) now and later it will be updated to the released version.

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