LibreOffice 7.4 Open-Source Office Suite Officially Released, This Is What’s New

LibreOffice 7.4

The Document Foundation released LibreOffice 7.4 today as the new stable series of their free, open-source, and cross-platform office suite that brings more new features and improvements.

Coming six and a half months after LibreOffice 7.3, the LibreOffice 7.4 release is here with lots of goodies for fans of the popular open–source office suite, including support for WebP images, support for EMZ/WMZ files, a new Search field for the Extension Manager to make it easier to find extensions, help pages for the ScriptForge scripting library, an asynchronous dialog for naming a new color, revamped font dialog, and the ability to remember if recent documents were opened read-only or editable.

For Writer, the document processor, LibreOffice 7.4 brings new typographic settings for hyphenation, a new remote grammar checker, better change tracking in the footnote area, various border improvements around tables and paragraphs, new numbering in Show Changes mode, and the ability to clear breaks from Word documents.

Word also received a new numbering system in the Show Changes mode, support for viewing tracked footnote deletion and insertion in the footnote area, native support for rich text, checkbox, dropdown, picture, and date content controls from Word, as well as support for edited lists to show original numbers in change tracking.

For Calc, the spreadsheet editor, LibreOffice 7.4 brings support for 16,384 columns in spreadsheets, a new menu item to search for sheet names, new functions in the AutoSum drop-down widget on the Formula bar, the ability to store the height of the formula bar inside the document, an improved Move/Copy sheet dialog, and automatic cell matrix expansion for formula expressions that return an array/matrix.

Calc also received a bunch of performance improvements for multiple columns containing data, for various functions like COUNTIF, SUMIFS and VLOOKUP, for recalculation of documents with many formulas, for opening of CSV files, for exporting Excel documents, as well as for loading spreadsheets that require recalculation.

For the Impress & Draw components, LibreOffice 7.4 adds initial support for document themes, along with shape fill support for document themes, and support for using slide background as shape fill for PPTX interoperability.

As usual, development was mostly focused on improving the interoperability with Microsoft’s proprietary file formats, such as DOCX, PPTX, and XLSX, in an attempt to help users migrate from MS Office to LibreOffice.

“LibreOffice 7.4 provides a large number of improvements and new features targeted at users sharing documents with MS Office or migrating from MS Office. These users should check new releases of LibreOffice on a regular basis, as the progress is so fast, that each new version improves dramatically over the previous one,” said The Document Foundation.

On top of that, LibreOffice 7.4 improves exporting of PDF documents, improves importing of TIFF files and adds support for the OfficeArtBlip TIFF format, improves HTML exporting by enabling UTF-8 encoding by default, improves importing and exporting of RTF files, and improves importing of EMF/WMF files with support for Miter Limit and individual line endings for the EMF+ format, Z compressed graphic formats support, and more.

LibreOffice 7.4 is available for download right now from the official website as ready-to-install 64-bit binaries for DEB and RPM-based distributions like Fedora Linux, Debian GNU/Linux, Ubuntu, etc. Of course, you will also find there the source tarballs, as well as binaries for macOS and Windows operating systems.

The LibreOffice 7.4 series is targeted at technology enthusiasts, early adopters, or power users, and will be supported with six maintenance releases until June 12th, 2023. For users who don’t need the very latest features, The Document Foundation recommends the LibreOffice 7.3 series, which is maintained until November 30th, 2022.

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