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Winmag.com: An Industrial Strength Linux Office Suite [Corel]

Jun 06, 2000, 11:59 (6 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Warren Ernst)

"There's a feeling that one thing is keeping Linux from being a realistic alternative to Windows on the world's computing desktops: the lack of a serious set of "office tools." You know what I'm talking about: a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation program, a database, and maybe an electronic organizer. Offices and small businesses rely on these tools day in and day out, and Microsoft Office 97 and 2000 in Microsoft Windows have become the standard. Because Microsoft has been cagey about its plans for a Linux version of Microsoft Office, there's really little reason for anyone who deals with MS Office files daily to even bother trying Linux. That is, until now."

"Enter Corel WordPerfect Office 2000 Deluxe for Linux, which packages the following programs: WordPerfect 9, Quattro Pro 9, Paradox 9, Corel Presentations 9, CorelCENTRAL 9, and Netscape Communicatior 4.7, along with 1000 True Type fonts, 12,000 pieces of clip art, 200 stock photos, and a copy of the Corel Linux operating system itself--in case you don't already have Linux installed somewhere. All for $159! In terms of sheer dollar value alone, Corel has a suite that deserves a close second look, along with a strong case to consider a "free" operating system like Linux in the first place."

"The first question that comes to mind is, "What features and abilities from Windows do I lose in Linux?" Frankly, I am amazed to reply, "I don't really see any." Corel is making use of a set of programming tools called "WINE," which, in essence, permit software written for Microsoft Windows to run in Linux. As a bonus, the Linux version looks almost exactly like the Windows version. The upside is that the Linux version of Corel's Suite is basically compiled from the same source code as the Windows version, meaning the Windows and Linux versions are just about twins. Though some developers haven't had much luck with WINE, Corel seems to have figured it out--all the programs were very stable. Perhaps not as stable as Linux-native software (WordPerfect seemed to freak out after running for 4 days straight), but I would argue it's at least as stable as Windows software."

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