LibreOffice 7.1 Open-Source Office Suite Officially Released, This Is What’s New

LibreOffice 7.1

The Document Foundation released today the LibreOffice 7.1 open-source and cross-platform office suite for all supported platforms, a major release that introduces new features and improvements.

The big news that The Document Foundation wants to share with us today is that they’ve released LibreOffice 7.1 Community, a version of the popular office suite that’s supported by volunteers and targeted at the general public, not at enterprises.

The labeling of LibreOffice has been discussed a while ago when The Document Foundation explained that splitting its LibreOffice office suite into “Personal” and “Enterprise” editions won’t affect the software’s functionality, availability or license. In fact, it will help evolve the product with new features that you will be able to benefit from.

LibreOffice 7.1 Community is supported by volunteers and developers employed by companies sitting in The Document Foundation’s Advisory Board, including Collabora, Red Hat and CIB/Allotropia, and it’s not optimized for the needs of enterprise users, who can opt for long-term support options, professional assistance, custom features and other benefits here.

“This has been a problem for the sustainability of the LibreOffice project, because it has slowed down the evolution of the software,” said Italo Vignoli. “This has had a twofold negative consequence for the project: a poor use of volunteers’ time, as they have to spend their time to solve problems for business that provide nothing in return to the community, and a net loss for ecosystem companies.”

What’s new in LibreOffice 7.1 Community

With that out of the way, let’s take a look at the new features and improvements brought by the LibreOffice 7.1 release, which introduces a new dialog that lets you select the User Interface flavor of your choice at first start, a new Additions Dialog that lets you search, download, and install extensions with a single click, as well as the ability to display all supported files when adding a new extension in the Extension Manager.

LibreOffice 7.1 also improves the Print Preview dialog to make it update asynchronously and prevent it from blocking the user interface when adjusting settings in the Print Dialog. Moreover, this release improves the search functionality for a matching printer paper size for the printed document, and further improves the interoperability with Microsoft’s proprietary document formats (DOCX, XLSX and PPTX).

For Writer, LibreOffice 7.1 adds a new Style Inspector to display the attributes of Paragraph and Character Styles, and manually formatted (Direct Formatting) properties, improves the speed of find and replace operations, adds the ability to detect Unicode characters even if the imported text file doesn’t have the BOM (Byte Order Mark), and lets users set the default anchor for newly added images via Tools > Options > LibreOffice Writer.

Writer also features a new outline folding mode to let you fold all text from the current heading to next heading in your documents. In addition, Writer now supports locale-independent templates, comes with several new table formulas for Word interoperability, including ABS table formula, COUNT table formula, PRODUCT table formula, and SIGN table formula, and lets you toggle input fields and select empty fields with the mouse.

For Calc, LibreOffice 7.1 brings a new option to disable pasting with the Enter key, a new option that lets you select items in the Autofilter window by clicking on all item’s row in addition to the checkbox, a “Reset All” button to the Solver dialog, and support for sheet-local scoped names to the INDIRECT function. Calc also received significant speed improvements for spell checking, searching in Autofilter, as well as find and replace operations.

For Impress & Draw, LibreOffice 7.1 lets you add visible signatures to existing PDF files in Draw, introduces detection of 0-byte files based on extension in Impress, lets you change animations for several objects at once in Impress, adds new physics based animation capabilities and new animation effect presets that use them, adds realistic soft blurred shadows to objects, and new “Pause/Resume” and “Exit” buttons to Presenter’s Screen.

Among other changes, LibreOffice 7.1 improves the DOCX import/export filter with support for change tracking in floating table, support for keeping the spacing below the last paragraph in the header of DOC and DOCX files, the ability to import formulas in text tables and export formula fields, and improved handling of cached field results in Writer.

Last but not least, this release introduces ScriptForge libraries, an extensible and robust collection of macro scripting resources for LibreOffice that can be invoked from user Basic or Python scripts, full support of HTML colors in Math, several SmartArt improvements when importing from PPTX files, and a new widget with styles preview for the tabbed Notebookbar theme.

Of course, there are numerous other under-the-hood improvements to make LibreOffice more stable and reliable when editing your documents, and many localization improvements. For more details and to see the new features in action, you can check out the video below or the full release notes, and you can download LibreOffice 7.1 right now from the official website to install it on your GNU/Linux distribution.

Last updated 3 years ago

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