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5 Free and Open Source Alternatives to Microsoft Office

Sep 18, 2012, 14:00 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Vangie Beal)

While Microsoft Office is the industry standard in terms of , integrated applications for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, database management, email and desktop publishing. However, it's important for small business owners to know that these types of office applications are also available in free and open source office productivity applications.

Open source office software has come a long way in recent years, so choosing free software over expensive proprietary software doesn't mean you'll lose features and support. Today's open source office productivity software is feature-rich and provides ample access to online documentation and large communities of users and developers.

You'll also find that open source products support the common document file types—including Microsoft file formats. Best of all, when you choose open source office software, you can forget about the hefty purchase price and per-user licensing fees that can eat up a small office's budget in no time.

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