Ubuntu Precise Office


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Ubuntu Precise Office
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Office Suites

Gedit Text Editor

Gedit is the default Ubuntu (Gnome) text editor. See the online Help manual for usage instructions.


LibreOffice is a free and open source (GPL-licensed) office suite with applications for word processing (Writer), math formulae and equations (Math), diagrams and charts (Draw), presentations (Impress), spreadsheets (Calc), and databases (Base) that is now installed by default in (K)Ubuntu. If not, it can be installed:

sudo apt-get install libreoffice

Open Word 2007 Documents in LibreOffice

The latest edition of LibreOffice opens .docx (i.e. Word 2007) documents by default.

Open Office

Open Office was installed by default in older versions of (K)Ubuntu. It has been replaced by LibreOffice (which is similar) and is no longer available in (K)Ubuntu.


Calligra is a KDE-oriented office suite that is fork of (and replaces) KOffice. It includes applications for word processing (Words), graphics and painting (Karbon and Krita), presentation and diagrams (Stage and Flow), spreadsheets (Sheets), databases (Kexi), and project management (Plan). Install:

sudo apt-get install calligra


AbiWord is a fast, collaboration-enabled word processor. For the most current version see the AbiWord web site. To install from the repositories:

sudo apt-get install abiword

GoldenDict (Multi-lingual Dictionary and Translator)

GoldenDict is multi-lingual dictionary and translator that supports Babylon and StarDict translation dictionary files and has multiple modular plugins. Install:

sudo apt-get install goldendict


Xournal is a free (GPL-licensed) GTK/Gnome-based application for notetaking, sketching, or keeping a journal using a stylus. Install (universe repositories must be enabled):

sudo apt-get install xournal

Special characters

  • Gucharmap is a Gnome-based utility for finding special characters which are not available on the keyboard. Install:
sudo apt-get install gucharmap

PDF Files

PDF is the file format used by Adobe Acrobat (which can be read by many e-book readers as well). There are many PDF-oriented utilities available in (K)Ubuntu. In a package manager, search for "pdf".

Print to a PDF file

(K)Ubuntu allows printing of any document to the PDF format by default. From any application:

File -> Print -> Print to File -> Output: PDF

View a PDF document

Evince is the default PDF document viewer in Ubuntu. PDF files are associated by default with Evince, so clicking on a PDF file (from a file manager such as Nautilus) will open it with Evince. Evince can also be started:

Menu -> Office -> Evince

Scan to a PDF file

Gscan2pdf is a utility to do exactly that: scan to a PDF file. Multiple options for scanning can be set. Install:

sudo apt-get install gscan2pdf
Scan receipts to PDF from Android

PDF Toolkit (PDF file management)

PDF Toolkit allows manipulation of PDF files, including splitting, deleting pages, and other functions. See these tips.

  • Install:
sudo apt-get install pdftk
  • To delete pages from a PDF file:
pdftk old.pdf cat 1-9 26-end output new.pdf
  • GUIPDFTK is a GUI for the PDF Toolkit.

PDF-Shuffler (PDF file management)

PDF-Shuffler is a free GTK-based utility to manipulate multiple PDF files, allowing individual pages or entire PDF documents to be re-arranged, rotated, merged, or deleted. This is an essential tool for working with PDF files. Install:

sudo apt-get install pdf-shuffler
Menu -> Office -> PDF-Shuffler

MaxView (PDF file management)

MaxView is a utility to capture, manipulate and rearrange, and print .pdf and .max files. Written in Qt, it is similar in some respects to Paperport.

  • Download and install the .deb package (use i386 instead of amd64 if using a 32-bit OS):
wget -O maxview_current.deb http://sourceforge.net/projects/maxview/files/maxview0.7-2/maxview_0.7-2_amd64_maverick.deb/download
sudo dpkg -i maxview_current.deb
  • Start MaxView in a GUI by creating a menu item with the Command: maxview /home/user, where /home/user is the directory in which you wish MaxView to start.

PDFMod (PDF file management)

PdfMod is a Gnome-based application to reorder, rotate, and remove pages, export images from a document, edit the title, subject, author, and keywords, and combine documents via drag and drop. Install:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:pdfmod-team/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install pdfmod

PDFedit (PDF file editor)

PDFedit is a free (GPL-licensed), Qt-based PDF file editing and manipulation program that uses a GUI for editing. Install:

sudo apt-get install pdfedit

Import PDF files into a word processor

Import PDF files into LibreOffice Writer

PDF files can be imported into the LibreOffice Writer word processor as a hybrid document (not a scanned character document) by installing:

sudo apt-get install libreoffice-pdfimport
Import PDF files into KWord

Kword is the Word Processor package in KOffice. It allows the importing of PDF files by default.

PDF-XChange (PDF file editor)

PDF-XChange is a free Windows-based application to view, modify, or perform simple editing of PDF files. It works under Wine.

DjVu files

DjVu is an open source file format that is an alternative to PDF. Files in this format are more compact while retaining image-layer separation of images and text. DjVu files can be read by both Evince (in Ubuntu) and Okular (in Kubuntu).

  • A PDF to DjVU convertor (pdf2djvu) can be installed:
sudo apt-get install pdf2djvu
  • A utility to scan documents to DjVU format (gscan2pdf) can be installed:
sudo apt-get install gscan2pdf
  • A standalone DjVU document viewer can be installed:
sudo apt-get install djview4
  • A utility to convert DjVU documents to PDF format (djvu2pdf) can be installed:
sudo apt-get install djvulibre-bin ghostscript
wget http://0x2a.at/site/projects/djvu2pdf/djvu2pdf_0.9.2-1_all.deb
sudo apt-get install djvu2pdf_0.9.2-1_all.deb

CHM files

CHM files are proprietary Microsoft Compiled HTML format help files used in Windows 98 (through Windows 7).

CHM file viewers

  • kchmviewer is a Qt-based CHM file viewer (which can be used with KDE / Kubuntu). Install:
sudo apt-get install kchmviewer
  • chmsee is a GTK-based CHM file viewer (which can be used with Ubuntu). Install:
sudo apt-get install chmsee
  • xchm is a CHM file viewer for Linux. Install:
sudo apt-get install xchm

CHM file conversion

  • Calibre can be used to convert .CHM files to a wide variety of other formats, including other eBook formats.
  • chm2pdf is a utility to convert .CHM files to .PDF. Install:
sudo apt-get install chm2pdf
Convert a file (also see these tips or use man chm2pdf in a command line terminal):
chm2pdf --book inputfilename.chm outputfilename.pdf
The option --webpage can be used instead of --book to give different formatting.
  • arCHMage is a Python-based utility to extract text, HTML formatting, images, and CSS styles from the .CHM file. (See the ArCHMage website for more instructions.) Install:
sudo apt-get install archmage


FBReader (e-book reader)

FBReader is a free cross-platform e-book reader, based on the GTK platform. Install:

sudo apt-get install fbreader

Calibre (eBook conversion)

Calibre is an eBook reader, library manager, and tool for conversion between many eBook formats (including the .epub format). Install:

sudo apt-get install calibre
  • eBook conversion examples and tips are here.

Sigil (eBook editing and conversion)

Sigil allows creation and editing of an eBook in .epub format and conversion from other formats. Download and install the binary from the website.

eCub (eBook editing and conversion)

eCub allows creation and editing of an eBook in .epub format and conversion from other formats. Download and install the .deb package from the website.

QR Codes


Qrencode is a command line utility to encode any line of text (such as a URL) into a QR encoded .PNG graphic image. Install:

sudo apt-get install qrencode
man qrencode
  • Example usage (from a command-line terminal):
qrencode -o generatedimage.png "Have a Nice Day"
which will create a .png image showing the QR code for the simple text Have a Nice Day (note the usage of parentheses to accommodate the spaces in the text), or use
qrencode -o generatedimage.png http://ubuntuguide.org
to create a .png image showing the QR code for the URL of Ubuntuguide.
  • Qr-code-creator is a GUI for qrencode. Download and install the .deb package directly from the Launchpad site.

qtqr (QR encoder/decoder GUI)

QR Tools comprises a Python-based backend for manipulating QR codes (python-qrtools) and a GUI (qtqr). In Quantal or later, install:

sudo apt-get install qr-tools
In earlier versions download and install the .deb packages qtqr_1.2_all.deb and python-qrtools_1.2_all.deb from the QR Tools Launchpad site.

qreator (QR encoder GUI)

Qreator is a GUI-based QR code generator. See the installation instructions at the Launchpad site.

QR code viewers

  • Zbar is a free open-source barcode and QR code scanner that recognizes many formats. Install the utilities and the GTK-bindings:
sudo apt-get install zbar-tools libzbargtk0
  • For Android phones, a free, simple (ad-free) QR code scanner is Obsqr, whose .apk can be downloaded and installed directly from the F-Droid site listed.

Scripts and Screenplays

  • Trelby is an open source alternative to Final Draft. A .deb package can be downloaded from the website and installed directly.
  • Using a MediaWiki extension, a screenplay can be written in MediaWiki, allowing conversion to other formats.

Personal Information Managers

Kontact Personal Information Manager

Kontact is the default PIM included with Kubuntu. Kontact includes email, an address book, a calendar, reminders, pop-up notes, a link to the Akregator News/RSS reader, time-tracking, and more. Its many functions resemble MS-Outlook. Through connectors it interfaces with many groupware servers (such as Kolab and eGroupware). Install:

sudo apt-get install kontact

BasKet Note Pads

BasKet Note Pads is a personal note-taking application that resides on your computer and can be used for creating "to-do" lists. It is great for centralising your thoughts in one place. Install it:

sudo apt-get install basket

Planner (Project planning & management)

Planner is an MS-Project-like planning and management tool.

sudo apt-get install planner

Time Tracker

You can keep track how long you use an application with a TimeTracker application. Keep records for billing or simply limit your Internet usage. See this list of similar-function apps for Linux.

  • Project Hamster is a time-tracking applet for the Gnome desktop. Install:
sudo apt-get install hamster-applet
  • Gtimelog is a simple version for GtK. Install:
sudo apt-get install gtimelog
sudo apt-get install ktimetracker


Calendar clients include

Mozilla Sunbird (Calendar)

Sunbird is a standalone group calendar client that has largely been replaced by the Lightning extension for Thunderbird and Firefox. Download from the website and install by clicking on the downloaded file to extract, or:

sudo mkdir /etc/sunbird
cd /etc/sunbird
sudo wget -O sunbird-current.tar.bz2 http://download.mozilla.org/?product=sunbird-1.0b1&os=linux64&lang=en-US
tar -xvjf sunbird-current.tar.bz2
Replace os=linux64 with os=linux if using a 32-bit OS.
  • Then create a menu item named Sunbird to point to the Command: /etc/sunbird/sunbird
Personal tools
Going Tribal