Serious LibreOffice update fixes 54 bugs

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It was just about two months ago that LibreOffice 4.0 made its official debut, but business users and others more interested in stability than cutting-edge features also have another option from the Document Foundation.

Specifically, LibreOffice 3.6 is currently the version of the free and open source productivity suite recommended for enterprises. On Thursday it got a significant update that fixes more than 50 bugs.

“This new release is suited to the increasing number of organizations migrating to LibreOffice, which is steadily growing worldwide,” the Document Foundation noted in its announcement.

Export and import improvements

Building upon LibreOffice 3.6, which was released last August, the new version 3.6.6 of the software further enhances its stability with numerous bug fixes and updates.

Among 51 bugs fixed in the first release candidate of the software, for instance, are one affecting the export of .ppt files, another obscuring the visibility of chart files after saving, and yet another affecting OOXML import.

The second release candidate of the software added another three key fixes, including an editing issue in the Calc spreadsheet module.

The original LibreOffice 3.6 added features including support for importing Microsoft Office SmartArt, a new widescreen format for slideshows, and PDF export with a watermark option.

The Document Foundation

50 million users (or more)

Since LibreOffice is free to download, usage estimates are tricky. Nevertheless, the Document Foundation estimates that 20 million to 30 million Linux users plus 30 million to 40 million Windows users are currently using the software, it recently told Ars Technica.

By last fall, downloads to date were already about 20 million, not including all the many Linux users who get the software through their operating system's repositories. LibreOffice is now typically the productivity suite of choice in most major Linux distributions.

The updated LibreOffice is available as a free download from the site. To get version 3.6.6, select "Change System, Version or Language" and specify your requirements from there. Ultimately, you'll get an option to choose version 3.6.6, as shown in the screenshot above.

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