[Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

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[Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:21 pm

I have used the latest open office since August, installed on a new HP computer.
The bugs have gone beyond annoying, to actually losing data.

The 1st major bug is in writer: anytime an image is inserted in the middle section of a long document, it always jumps to the end of the document. Then one must scroll all the way back and find where previous editing was being done. This is not acceptable.

2nd major bug; When scrolling down to highlight or change blocks text, scrolling function randomly locks up, and the operation must be repeated, sometimes 2 or 3 times before it works again.

3rd bug: when working with both open office writer and impress, Impress locks up and becomes unresponsive, sometimes up to 30 seconds.

4th bug: constant loss of data- Open office will not reliably save documents, even when work is properly saved and closed. Recovery is a gamble at best.

5th bug: one cannot insert graphics by pasting to the document from a clipboard. The graphics look ok until the document is closed and re-opened, then they jump all over the document, and it must all be repaired manually.

6th (major problem): This is incredibly bloated, and resource consuming. This has gone beyond usability on a typical PC, the processes and CPU consumed have almost made open office defeat it's own original intent.


These are just a few annoyances that have become unbearable. I have used open office for almost 13 years, but now, I cannot afford to lose anymore data, or waste time trying to deal with the bugs. This latest software has the exact same problems on my HP laptop. I was a huge advocate of openoffice in the early part of the last decade, but unfortunately I am going to have to bite the bullet and purchase Microsoft office again. I have MS office on a slower laptop, and it has none of the problems I have described. I just need a reliable office software on my larger HP desktop.
I really hate to have to gripe on my first post, but I am very disappointed.
Last edited by Hagar Delest on Sat Nov 23, 2013 6:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: tagged [Issue] (link to a bug report).
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Re: Open office almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby RoryOF » Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:29 pm

Why not revert to an earlier version? I have OpenOffice Writer in daily use, and Impress in occasional use and have lost no data - 2000 Saves on my current Writer file.
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Re: Open office almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Bill » Fri Nov 22, 2013 3:58 pm

jjess005 wrote:I have used the latest open office since August...

Do you have version 4.0.1? It was released near the end of September.
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Re: Open office almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Fri Nov 22, 2013 4:17 pm

Yes, on the HP desktop it was updated, they functioned exactly the same
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Re: Open office almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby acknak » Fri Nov 22, 2013 4:59 pm

Sorry, I know it doesn't help your situation, but I've encountered none of these problems with OO 4.0.1 running on Linux, with a much older, less powerful system.

That's just to say that the problems may be coming from the system side, not due to "bugs" in OO, as such. Windows 8 is rather new and may have incompatibilities that the OO developers will need to be work through. I don't know how other Windows users are finding the new OO release but I haven't noticed a flood of reports, which we surely would see if everyone was having this level of problems.

I have (rarely) encountered the "jumping" on inserting an image, but it was specific to the document, not a general behavior. Maybe your issue is something different? Hard to say without testing the specific document.

If you haven't tried it already, do try a fresh OO settings profile: [Tutorial] The OOo user profile
That tends to fix a lot of mysterious problems.
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Re: Open office almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Villeroy » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:03 pm

Turn off the network, virus and anti-virus. See if this makes any difference.
OpenOffice is usable on computers like this one: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raspberry_Pi
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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Re: OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Sat Nov 23, 2013 4:19 pm

Now I am dealing with a new bug in Impress. When I am highlighting text to change font and color of the slideshow (right click), after about one hour it no longer lets me do changes. Now, when I highlight text to change colors or font, it brings up a different list on right click that says :
Spellcheck
Add
Ignore all
Word is English
Paragraph is English.

No longer does my list for changing font, color, size etc. come up. It just does a different routine on highlight and right click. I have tried for 30 minutes to make it work like before, but no luck.

I will just write every bug down so hopefully the coders can fix things. If this is a widows problem, it sounds like open office is not optimized for windows 8.1, though I can hardly rationalize how windows or antivirus would cause these problems.
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Re: OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Sat Nov 23, 2013 4:24 pm

I did find the bug about OO jumping to the end of page, apparently it has never been resolved:

Bug 121443 - Insert picture (from file) focus jumps to end of document
Status: CONFIRMED
Product: Writer
Component: editing
Version: 3.4.1
Hardware: All All
Importance: P3 normal (vote)
Target Milestone: ---
Assigned To: AOO issues mailing list
QA Contact:
URL:
Keywords:
Duplicates: 123393 (view as bug list)
Depends on:
Blocks: 121500
Show dependency tree / graph



Reported: 2012-12-06 11:29 UTC by James
Modified: 2013-10-01 13:44 UTC (History)
CC List: 7 users (show)
See Also:
Issue Type: DEFECT
Latest Confirmation on: 4.0.0
Developer Difficulty: ---
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Bill » Sat Nov 23, 2013 7:46 pm

jjess005 wrote:IThe 1st major bug is in writer: anytime an image is inserted in the middle section of a long document, it always jumps to the end of the document. Then one must scroll all the way back and find where previous editing was being done. This is not acceptable.

This seems to happen in documents longer than 30 pages. Try pressing the Esc key. That should return to the editing position without having to scroll back.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby acknak » Sat Nov 23, 2013 9:20 pm

Bill wrote:
jjess005 wrote:IThe 1st major bug is in writer: anytime an image is inserted in the middle section of a long document, it always jumps to the end of the document. ...

This seems to happen in documents longer than 30 pages. Try pressing the Esc key. That should return to the editing position without having to scroll back.

Yow. I see the same thing. That's pretty annoying.

The "escape" trick does help, although it doesn't seem to exactly restore the previous editing view, but it's at least back to the right neighborhood.

I'll have to check for an issue; I expect it's already in the system.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby RoryOF » Sat Nov 23, 2013 9:22 pm

Could one not use the Navigator to return to the new image?
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby acknak » Sat Nov 23, 2013 9:29 pm

Here it is:
Issue 121443: Insert picture (from file) focus jumps to end of document You can register there and add your vote (up to two) or comment.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:50 pm

Well the good news is I got an email from my University saying Microsoft is offering office free to students and faculty starting December 1st, so that will definitely help. The bad news is I would have loved to have seen a lot of these bugs resolved, and continued to use this otherwise decent open source software. Unfortunately I just do not have the time or patience to keep working around the problems with finals and master's thesis in the works this last 4 weeks of the semester.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Sun Nov 24, 2013 11:48 pm

Found yet another bug working between writer, and impress.
I turned spellcheck off in Impress to temporarily view the presentation free of red lines (some words it did not recognize as being valid). Now my spellcheck on OO writer no longer works, even though I have reactivated it and have it working in Impress. I followed these instructions : https://wiki.openoffice.org/wiki/Docume ... to_work%3F
To try to remedy the problem with OO writer, but spell check no longer works. Not sure how changing spell check in Impress would permanently mess up OO writer spellcheck? :?
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Hagar Delest » Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:23 am

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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jjess005 » Fri Nov 29, 2013 6:46 pm

After spellcheck quit working upon 164 pages, I uninstalled Openoffice 4 completely , and installed Openoffice 3.2.1. Everything seems to be working again.
Looks like I am back in business.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby RoryOF » Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:03 pm

I have spellcheck working on OO 4.0.1 on a 900+ pages book, also on a 3000+ pages book.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby vojo » Sun Dec 01, 2013 8:56 pm

FYI

bug 1 and Bug 5 are present on XP SP3....several years (at least as far back as 2011....XP in 2011, dont ask).

Bug 1 on XP, takes you to the top of the file for me at least.....not only happens when inserting an image anywhere BEFORE the last image in the file.
This seems to have started somewhere around 3.0.(before that, insert would stay on figure).

Bug 5 seems to come from some change in philosophy somewhere between 3.2 and 4 (could copy paste in 3.2...in 4 need to save as a png then insert...yes a real pain)

Now the good news....never have lost any data and OO is way way way way more stable than LO. Dont know if its their installer or all the sizzle they keep including with the
steak, but LO does manage file associations well, installs take lots of tries to accomplish, etc.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby HowardJ » Sun Dec 01, 2013 11:42 pm

Re Bug #5. I have been able to correct jumping graphics after re-loads by cutting one of them and then doing an undo - for some reason this usually puts them back where I left them. (This I learned many versions ago!)
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jowen » Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:32 pm

For the second time I have lost a 400+ page document (fortunately, backed up--whew!) because of issues with OpenOffice writer on Windows 8.1. Near as I can determine from the postings above, these issues have NOT been resolved and OpenOffice remains basically unusable with Windows 8.1.
1) When inserting pictures or graphics the writer program bounces to the end of the document and you must scroll back to your point of editing (have compensated by remembering the page number which makes the process faster, but is not efficient, especially in a document of considerable size).
2) Pictures and graphics "float" even when "anchored". The Help documentation for "Anchor" is sketchy at best.
3) "Saved" pictures often have a "Read" issue when the document has been properly saved, then re-opened. Picture is gone and must be totally redone. Saving hours of work is a gamble, at best.
4) Today, AGAIN, I got a "Fatal Error--Bad Allocation" message when trying to open my document. I'm not a "techie". I just want to finish my writing project. Even though I find the price far too high, I'm ready to plunk down my hard earned dollars and buy Windows Office.
Anyone out there been able to make 4.0.1 work on Windows 8.1? HELP!!
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby acknak » Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:51 pm

jowen wrote:...
1) When inserting pictures or graphics the writer program bounces to the end of the document and you must scroll back to your point of editing ...

It's a known problem. Hopefully addressed in a future release.

You can workaround it by pressing the escape key after the shift to the end. That should take you back to the cursor location.
2) Pictures and graphics "float" even when "anchored".

The default setting is "anchor to paragraph" which allows text to flow around the insert. This layout can be quite unstable, especially with large or numerous inserts.

Much more stable is the "anchor as character" setting, which acts just like a (very large) text character.

If you have specific questions about anchoring, just ask.
3) "Saved" pictures often have a "Read" issue ...
4) Today, AGAIN, I got a "Fatal Error--Bad Allocation" message when trying to open my document....

OO can be very balky and unstable with large documents that contain lots of graphic inserts. Using anchor to character and inserting images by link can help a lot. Another workaround is to leave the images out of the document until last, and then work with them one at a time, saving the document to a new file often.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby jowen » Fri Dec 13, 2013 7:01 pm

Thanks for your quick response.
When writing a book for print, a link to pictures will not work.
Thanks for the tip about anchoring. Your explanation is much easier to understand than the "Help" section.
Today's loss was after I had roughly half the pictures inserted. I have the text done and had saved the photos to the last step. Guess the suggestion to save the photo insert until the end would work only if one were using only a couple pictures, not the several hundred found in a family history book.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby petersteier » Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:41 am

Unfortunately I have to support the observation that OpenOffice is unusable buggy. I decided to try to switch from Microsoft some two weeks ago, due to the well-known nuisances of contantly changing user interfaces (e.g. ribbions), limited licences, and the pressure to move to their cloud; but especially for the new user interface for charts in Excel 2010 and 2013, which is completely mysterious. Initally, I was impressed how well formulas, even complex ones, are translated from Excel to Calc. However, unfortunatley Calc crashes about every ten minutes in many different situation, some somehow reproducable (I think I have encountered some 50 crashes in the last two weeks). Thus, productive work is not possible.

I just wanted to let you know; probably OO development should completely focus on stability.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby RoryOF » Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:50 am

The stability on Windows 8 seems to vary from computer to computer, so it probably relates to installed software. There are many satisfied users of OpenOffice on Windows 8; the reports of instability come from a small number (relative to total user base).

On your computer have you any form of continuous backup utility running? Anything that touches open OpenOffice files has been reported to cause such instability (i mention specifically reports of troubles with Comodo; there may be others).

A useful test is to start Windows in Safe Mode and run OpenOffice in that mode (it may be slower). If it is stable in that mode the problem is almost certainly due to some program or windows application that runs in full mode. Then detective work comes into play!
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Bill » Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:13 pm

petersteier wrote:... unfortunatley Calc crashes about every ten minutes in many different situation, some somehow reproducible...

At the moment, there are 8 bug reports in Bugzilla about Calc 4.1 crashing. One is for Windows XP. Four are for Windows 7. Two are for Windows 8. One is for all operating systems. Not one of these reports has been confirmed, meaning that they haven't been reproduced. How can the problem be reproduced?
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby Bill » Mon Aug 18, 2014 2:56 pm

I've had a Calc worksheet open now for over 1.5 hours with no sign of instability, slowdown or crash. I've added formulas, inserted and deleted rows, used Find and Help, copied images from PhotoFiltre and pasted in Calc, inserted images form file, saved and reloaded the document. How do I reproduce instability?

jjess005 wrote:I did find the bug about OO jumping to the end of page, apparently it has never been resolved:

Bug 121443 - Insert picture (from file) focus jumps to end of document
Status: CONFIRMED

This bug is now VERIFIED FIXED in AOO 4.1.1, the next bug-fix release.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby petersteier » Mon Aug 18, 2014 5:44 pm

If you want to try, you can access the .ods under

https://vera2.rad.univie.ac.at/share/st ... _U_V27.ods

It evaluates data collected by a particle accelerator. I admit it is rather complex, but so is life. Try to produce a new chart with error bars.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby John_Ha » Mon Aug 18, 2014 7:06 pm

It seems to open fine for me with AOO 4.1.0 on W7 though I note it has lots of divide by 0 errors - are you sure you don't have any in the chart data you are plotting.

I am not sure what you mean by "Try to produce a new chart with error bars."

Do you mean we should add a new chart? If so, what should we plot against what?

Or should we get a chart you already have to refresh with different data?

Could you please give step by step instructions as to what you would like us to do.

That being said, it might be best to continue discussions of this spreadsheet file on the Calc forum (this is the Writer forum) where I would be interested to know if there was a "Do a sanity check on this Calc file" capability.

Also it is a big file - 21 sheets, 115,421 cells and 551 pages - are there limits to a Calc spreadsheet?
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby petersteier » Mon Aug 18, 2014 8:59 pm

I just provided it as a test object to the robustness of Calc; maybe it is a better example than something artificial. It fact, it crashed in many different situations, when saving as .xls, when changing column formatting, and I fought especially when producing or editing charts.

The divisons by zero show up when there is not enough data for some calculations, e.g. the standard deviation of a single value. #DIV/0 is forbidden in math, but completely valid as a spreadsheet cell content.

I would consider the size typical for scientific data evaluation. Sorry for being on the wrong forum; I did only read the title after googling.

Sorry for not being more helpful and providing no precise bug report, just take it as a honest feedback.
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Re: [Issue] OpenOffice almost unusable for Windows 8.1

Postby John_Ha » Mon Aug 18, 2014 11:22 pm

petersteier wrote: ... it crashed in many different situations, when saving as .xls ...

That could be the source of your problems. .xls is a poorly documented, proprietary Microsoft format, which had to be reverse engineered to write the AOO interface to it. .xls files in Calc will never be as robust as .ods files.

You should always work, and save work in progress, in the native AOO formats - .odt, .ods etc. You should only save in the Microsoft format if it is absolutely essential to send someone a Microsoft format file - in which case you do another, final "copy save" as a .xls. If you do, you can never be certain that all the functions you have used in AOO will have .xls equivalents, or that the conversion is 100% accurate, so you may lose data and especially formatting.

On the other hand, all the AOO formats are well documented, published, open formats to an International Standards Office (ISO) recognised standard. AOO is designed to use these formats and any error arising from their use is a bug which will be addressed by the developers.
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