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The 5 Best MS Office Alternatives for Linux

by Nitish.S
The good thing with Linux is that it offers alternatives that have equal or better feature-set. Here are the MS Office alternatives for your Linux PC.

You did a fresh Linux installation. It’s fast, snappy, and secure. However, when you decided to use Linux, you decided to use open-source alternatives for most solutions. This means you are no longer interested in MS Office and are looking for MS Office alternatives for Linux.

You are not alone! Also, you are bound by the fact that MS Office is not natively supported by Linux operating system. To install it, you need to use virtualization solutions including CrossOver, Wine, and Virtual Machine.

Even though that’s a possible way to install MS Office, there is much to desire for native support. For instance, you will not get native support, which means that there will be a slow response or action. Moreover, you can also find yourself getting errors, which is not a great thing when working on your important project.

The good thing with Linux is that it offers alternatives that have equal or better feature-set. In the case of MS Office, you will easily get a dozen of options. And, that’s where we come in. To help you find the best MS alternative, we will list five of them for your reference.

Let’s get started.

The 5 Best MS Office Alternatives for Linux




LibreOffice is one of the most popular office solutions out there. In fact, it is the most popular alternative when it comes to MS Office. LibreOffice is not a new project. It started way back in 2011 where it forked the OpenOffice.org alternative and then started to evolve from there.

LibreOffice is a comprehensive Office solution, and the main reason behind it is its collaborative development process. This way, it can engage developers from all across the world. With excellent talent working on the project, you can access the best Office solution.

As LibreOffice is a suite, it comes with plenty of applications. The key application includes Writer, Impress, Draw, Calc, Base, and Math. In case you are confused, the Writer is the equivalent of the Word application.  The Calc is the spreadsheet equivalent where you can work on tons of data and arrange and work on them using built-in integrations and multi-user support. The Draw solution lets you create seamless flowcharts.

With Impress, you can easily create slides that are presentable, including animation, drawings, bullet points, and so on! The last two solutions include Math and Base, which lets you work with formulas and database systems.

At the time of writing, you can download LibreOffice 7 – its latest version.

The key features that you can expect from LibreOffice include the following:

  • Supports all kinds of documents
  • It offers a great way to organize your documents with a structured approach.
  • Offers extensions support so that you can expand its capabilities
  • It comes free of cost!
  • Builds on top of OpenOffice.org, which is an excellent Office suite
  • Works great for businesses

Their latest release offers better performance and compatibility. They also have made many usability improvements that will benefit you as a user.

As it is an open-source project, you can also become part of the project. This also means that LibreOffice has a friendly community, and you can easily find help if you are stuck with some problem.

The Pros of LibreOffice can be summarized as below:

  • Excellent community
  • Open source and free to use
  • Works well with MS Office file format
  • Constantly updated
  • Easy to install and configure

Apache OpenOffice


Apace OpenOffice

Our next candidate in the best Microsoft Word open-source alternative is Apache Open Office. It is developed by Sun Microsystems in 2010 when Oracle Organization acquired it. However, Oracle didn’t like the project that much. So, they fired the OpenOffice.org staff and made the project format. However, there was a big twist, considering that its source code licensing is Apache Software Foundations. And that’s where the Apache OpenOffice project started.

Right now, Apache OpenOffice is an open-source project where you get access to different office software suite, including Word Processing, Presentations, Spreadsheets, Graphics, and Database.

The key features of Apache OpenOffice include:

  • It is a great software developed over the past twenty years. This means you will find a consistent feature-set and user experience built over the year.
  • Apache OpenOffice is an open community solution. This means that anyone can contribute to it. The approach also bugs are caught and fixed frequently along with new features are added as well.
  • Apache OpenOffice is easy to use. If you have used any Word document solution or suite, you will find OpenOffice easy to use. Even without any old Office suite experience, OpenOffice offers a user-friendly approach where anyone can get started. It also comes with multiple language support making it easy for local people to use it in their work.
  • OpenOffice is free software, which means you do not have to pay anything to use it.

Overall, OpenOffice offers a good amount of pros, which can be summarized as below:

  • Free to use
  • Open source and licensed under Apache 2.0.
  • Excellent feature-set
  • Great community
  • Worldwide language support

WPS Office

WPS Office is a complete Office suite that you can use on many devices. It is a cross-platform solution available for MAC, PC, iOS, Web, and Linux. Linux’s version is also natively supported, which means that you do not have to worry about performance or bug issues.

If you are looking for a specific Linux download page, check out: WPS Office 2019 Linux.

So, what makes WPS Office a worthy alternative to MS Office? One of the first things that make it enticing is its high compatibility with existing Microsoft Office formats. It also supports Adobe PDF and Google Docs.

Apart from that, it is lightweight, and it should work on not-so-powerful machines. To ensure that it works with lightweight Linux distros, it comes with an ultra-small installation package. Also, it comes with 8 languages support.

Like the other free offering discussed here, WPS Office is also updated frequently. However, one thing makes it different from the other offerings, i.e., it’s not open source. Yes, it is a closed-source solution. It costs nothing to use, making it a clear alternative to MS Office for Linux.

The key features of WPS Office include:

  • It comes with a complete office site.
  • Compatible with Microsoft Office Suite
  • It supports multi-platform, making it a great pick if you work from different devices.
  • Offers Collaboration tools
  • Supports Adobe PDF
  • It comes with Data recovery.
  • Easy to use
  • Lightweight

Only Office



If you are looking for an MS Office alternative for your business, then the OnlyOffice solution might be for you. The OnlyOffice workspace comes with a good collection of productive apps and solutions that can help you run your entire business without the need to rely on external services or solutions.

With OnlyOffice, you get access to Docs, Mail, Group, Private Room, and Talk. In Docs, you get to use presentations, spreadsheets, and documents. The Group consists of more business-related solutions, including CRM, DMS, Mail, Projects, Calendar, Community, and so on! Also, you can try the solution on the cloud or, in fact, deploy it on your own server.

The key features offered by OnlyOffice include the following:

  • Ability to create and manage complex documents, presentations, and spreadsheets.
  • It can be deployed on the cloud or another server.
  • Works well with Linux operating system
  • It offers everything you need to grow your business.
  • It comes with an easy-to-use email management solution.
  • Reliable

Calligra Suite


Calligra Suite

The last alternative that we are going to discuss is Calligra Suite. Calligra Suite(previously known as KOffice) started its journey 15 years ago! Yes, it is an old project that still holds value when offering features against MS Office’s likes.

It comes pre-loaded with KDE based Linux distros. It is based on Qt, making it an excellent option for Linux-based KDE distros. However, it can run well with other distros as well.

Calligra Suite comes with a good collection of programs including Words of rich documents with images, tables, and so on — Sheets to work with spreadsheets — Kexi for database creation, Karbon for logos, illustrations, and so on — Stage for creating presentations, and Plan for effective project planning.

Key features worth mentioning

  • It is a lightweight solution.
  • Offers access to a wide suite of solutions
  • Based on QT


This leads us to the end of our article, where we discussed five of the best alternatives to Microsoft Office. So, which one are you going to pick? Comment below and let us know.

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