Office and Database Applications

A variety of office suites are now available for Linux (see Table 11-1). These include professional-level word processors, presentation managers, drawing tools, and spreadsheets. The freely available versions are described in this chapter. Sun has initiated development of an Open Source office suite using StarOffice code. The applications, known as OpenOffice, provide Office applications integrated with GNOME. OpenOffice is currently the primary office application supported by Fedora and Red Hat. KOffice is an entirely free office suite designed for use with KDE. The GNOME Office suite integrates GNOME applications into a productivity suite that is freely available. CodeWeavers CrossOver Office provides reliable support for running MS Office Windows applications directly on Linux, integrating with them with KDE and GNOME. You can also purchase commercial office suites such as StarOffice from Sun. For desktop publishing, especially PDF generation, you can use Scribus, a cross-platform tool available from the Fedora repository.

A variety of database management systems are also available for Linux. These include high-powered, commercial-level database management systems, such as Oracle, IBM's DB2, and Sybase. Most of the database management systems available for Linux are designed to support large relational databases. Fedora and Red Hat include both MySQL and PostgreSQL databases in its distribution. For small personal databases, you can use the desktop database management systems being developed for KDE and GNOME. In addition, some software is available for databases accessed with the Xbase database programming language. These are smaller databases using formats originally developed for dBase on the PC. Various database management systems available to run under Linux are listed in Table 11-6 later in this chapter.

Fedora and Red Hat Linux also provides several text editors that range from simple text editors for simple notes to editors with more complex features such as spell-checkers, buffers, or pattern matching. All generate character text files and can be used to edit any Linux text files. Text editors are often used in system administration tasks to change or add entries in Linux configuration files found in the /etc directory or a user's initialization or application dot files located in a user's home directory. You can use any text editor to work on source code files for any of the programming languages or shell program scripts.

Web Site


OpenOffice open source office suite based on StarOffice

KOffice Suite, for KDE

GNOME Office, for GNOME

StarOffice Suite

CrossOver Office (MS Office support)

Scribus desktop publishing tool

Table 11-1 Linux Office Suites

Table 11-1 Linux Office Suites

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