Archive for the ‘Open Source’ category

Novell Adds Support For OpenXML To OpenOffice

December 4, 2006

Novell is adding the ability to open and save documents in Microsoft’s new Open XML format in their version of OpenOffice.  Today, they released a release candidate version of their OpenOffice 2.0.2 and the final version is to come out in January.  Microsoft’s OpenXML is the default document feature of their Office 2007 System.  Novell’s version of OpenOffice has more features and might be worth considering.  You do need to be a registered Novell user.  OpenOffice is a FREE alternative to Microsoft Office and has many great programs such as Writer, Calc, Impress, Base, Draw, and Math.

In addition to all the usual OpenOffice.org features, this version includes support for the Open XML document format, plus the ability to e-mail any document as a Microsoft Office file from the system’s default e-mail application. It also enables users to migrate Excel VBA (Visual Basic Application) macros to OpenOffice’s Calc. This version also includes AGFA fonts that mimic Microsoft’s default TrueType fonts.  (Source: EWeek)

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Thunderbird & Lightning

November 8, 2006

What a cool name combination of Thunderbird and Lightning!  What are they you ask?  Thunderbird is an open source, free email program created by Mozilla and Lightning is a calendar extension for Thunderbird.  When these two work in conjunction they make for a great Email program.  Together, these two programs are a great competitor for Microsoft Outlook.  Thunderbird is a full featured email program with junk mail filtering and anti-phising protection.  It also is customizable and has automatic update capability and advanced security.  For more information, check out the Thunderbird section of the Mozilla web site.  For more information about the calendaring features of Lightning, check out the Lightning section of the Mozilla web site.  Lightning allows you to set appoints with reminders and add tasks.  Mozilla just released Thunderbird 1.5.0.8 and the recently released Lightning 0.3.

Firefox 2 Is Available

October 23, 2006

Firefox 2 is now available.  The Mozilla Foundation will officially release Firefox 2 tomorrow, but it is available now for downloading.  Firefox has increased in marketshare over the last year or so and now comprises of 13.7%.  If you are interested in downloading the latest version of Firefox for Windows, click here.  Firefox for Linux, click here.  Firefox 2 for Mac, click here.  I have been testing the Firefox 2 pre-release builds and there are some nice new features and I do recommend downloading Firefox 2 and testing it for yourself.  Overall I’ve also had Firefox installed on computers since it was released originally and do like the browser.

Here are a few of the new features in Firefox 2:

  1. A new theme that updates Firefox’s familiar interface 
  2. Built in Phishing Protection
  3. Enhanced search engine management and search suggestions for Google, Yahoo! and Answers.com
  4. Improvements to tabbed browsing, including the ability to re-open recently closed tabs
  5. Firefox will resume from where you left off after a system crash or browser restart
  6. Better support for previewing and subscribing to Web feeds
  7. Inline spell checking in Web forms
  8. The ability to create bookmarks with “Live Titles” for Web sites that offer microsummaries
  9. New Add-ons manager that simplifies management of extensions and themes.

OpenOffice 2.0.4 Available

October 11, 2006

OpenOffice.org has posted to their FTP site OpenOffice 2.0.4!  You can download it here for Windows and here for Linux.  This version is supposed to be much better than the previous version thanks to the developers.  OpenOffice has not officially launched it yet as they play to on Friday.  The reason for this is being speculated to coincide with the 6th anniversary of the first OpenOffice release.  It may not be as snazzy as Microsoft Office especially with the Office 2007 due out, but it is FREE and is a very good suite of products overall.

Firefox 2 RC2 Available

October 8, 2006

  The latest test version of Firefox 2 is available for download.

Firefox 2 Release Candidate 2 (RC 2) is a preview release of our next generation Firefox browser and is being made available for download to Web application developers, our testing community and users who want to get a sneak peek at the next version of Firefox. Please note that at this time, users should not expect all of their extensions, plugins and themes from previous versions of Firefox to work properly.

I do recommend that you take the Mozilla’s Firefox 2 RC2 for a test drive, and if you have installed IE7 then you can do a personal comparison.  If you are unsure whether or not to be a tester, you could download the Firefox 2 RC2 portable version which is put together by John Haller.  Here is a link to download the portable version.

Update:  The Mozilla Foundation has just announced that RC3 of Firefox 2 will be out on Tuesday.

How Big Is That Folder?

July 20, 2006

Have you ever wondered how big the files are in a particular folder on your computer?  You can always right click and go to properties and wait for the total to be calculated and then you’ll know.  However, there is an easier way and that is to download and install Folder Size.  This is a freeware program which adds a column to Windows Explorer to give you the size of a folder.  For more information on this program, click here.  To download the file directly, click here and select a mirror server to download the file.  Folder Size is an open source program.  What is Open Source? Click Here.

Widgets, Gadgets, and Desklets, Oh My!

July 18, 2006

They have become very popular because it gives you quick access to some of your most important items, and not to mention it adds a little eye candy to your desktops.  Widgets, Gadgets, and Desklets are made for Mac, Windows, and Linux.  For more information, click here.  Apple has had them since they released OSX, Microsoft is adding them to Windows Vista, also Yahoo and Google are creating them for Windows XP, and now, they have come to the Linux desktop from aDesklets.  Check out these cool new tools for the desktop.