Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

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Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Owen Thomas
Hello again.

My faith in LibreOffice has been tested these few years because it seems that large pieces of it haven't been functioning for a while. The format paintbrush mechanism apparently hasn't been working for about two years.

Recently, I've been trying to use LibreOffice for the first time after I installed 16.04, and I find that the spell checker is broken for Australian and UK English. It simply won't pick up spelling mistakes (neither as I type nor when I request a scan of the document) after I select either dictionary.

I can't ask this question of ask.libreoffice.org because I can't get past the robot detection mechanism - that seems to be broken also. I think Ubuntu has to make a decision whether it should find and put resources toward making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default installation.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Colin Law
On 6 October 2017 at 11:07, Owen Thomas <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hello again.
>
> My faith in LibreOffice has been tested these few years because it seems
> that large pieces of it haven't been functioning for a while. The format
> paintbrush mechanism apparently hasn't been working for about two years.
>
> Recently, I've been trying to use LibreOffice for the first time after I
> installed 16.04, and I find that the spell checker is broken for Australian
> and UK English. It simply won't pick up spelling mistakes (neither as I type
> nor when I request a scan of the document) after I select either dictionary.
>
> I can't ask this question of ask.libreoffice.org because I can't get past
> the robot detection mechanism - that seems to be broken also. I think Ubuntu
> has to make a decision whether it should find and put resources toward
> making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default installation.

I have not seen any such problems.  What does
apt-cache policy libreoffice-writer
show?

Colin

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Owen Thomas
libreoffice-writer:
  Installed: 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2
  Candidate: 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2
  Version table:
 *** 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2 500
        500 http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-updates/main amd64 Packages
        500 http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-security/main amd64 Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status
     1:5.1.2-0ubuntu1 500
        500 http://au.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial/main amd64 Packages


On 6 October 2017 at 21:41, Colin Law <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 6 October 2017 at 11:07, Owen Thomas <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Hello again.
>
> My faith in LibreOffice has been tested these few years because it seems
> that large pieces of it haven't been functioning for a while. The format
> paintbrush mechanism apparently hasn't been working for about two years.
>
> Recently, I've been trying to use LibreOffice for the first time after I
> installed 16.04, and I find that the spell checker is broken for Australian
> and UK English. It simply won't pick up spelling mistakes (neither as I type
> nor when I request a scan of the document) after I select either dictionary.
>
> I can't ask this question of ask.libreoffice.org because I can't get past
> the robot detection mechanism - that seems to be broken also. I think Ubuntu
> has to make a decision whether it should find and put resources toward
> making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default installation.

I have not seen any such problems.  What does
apt-cache policy libreoffice-writer
show?

Colin

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Xen
In reply to this post by Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas schreef op 06-10-2017 12:07:

> My faith in LibreOffice has been tested these few years because it
> seems that large pieces of it haven't been functioning for a while. The
> format paintbrush mechanism apparently hasn't been working for about
> two years.

> Recently, I've been trying to use LibreOffice for the first time after
> I installed 16.04, and I find that the spell checker is broken for
> Australian and UK English. It simply won't pick up spelling mistakes
> (neither as I type nor when I request a scan of the document) after I
> select either dictionary. I can't ask this question of
> ask.libreoffice.org because I can't get past the robot detection
> mechanism - that seems to be broken also. I think Ubuntu has to make a
> decision whether it should find and put resources toward making Libre
> Office function, or remove it from the default installation.

I can only say that I agree that LibreOffice is still, as OpenOffice
also was I must say, an application with incredible annoying behaviour
from time to time, most notably causing you to be writing in margins or
font sizes that you did not expect, ruining your documents for a long
time, often forcing you to rewrite them.

It can be called human error but this human error happens so often to me
and has caused me so much damage that it's absolutely not a 'fun' thing
to experience.

After a while you get to learn all the pitfalls but LibreOffice
developers in general or the community ever refuse to acknowledge that
anything is wrong with the product so the product also never improves.

Right now again some text changed from 12.0 point to 12.3 point without
me noticing because I had been in some 12.3 text at some point
somewhere.

This can be called normal operation sure.

It happens so often to me that it just makes me sick (literally).

Regards.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Karl Auer
In reply to this post by Owen Thomas
On Fri, 2017-10-06 at 21:50 +1100, Owen Thomas wrote:
> libreoffice-writer:
>   Installed: 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2

I have the same version as you do. I live in Oz, I have several
dictionaries installed including Australian English. If I open a clean
document and type "color" it is flagged as a misspelling with a wiggly
red line underneath it. Same for "humor", "sanitize" and a bunch of
other americanisms. It also flags outright wrong stuff like "hgft". If
I instead type "colour", "humour" and "sanitise", there is no wiggly
red line.

If I change the "Languages" option and make the locale and language
"English (USA)", the americanisms versions lose the wiggly line and the
correctly spelled versions :-) gain one. So to me it all seems to be
working fine. I didn't try going through the Tools menu.

Can you provide a  short procedure that will (on your system) reliably
demonstrate the problem? And what specific indicator you are using for
the problem? E.g., "I type 'humor', I expect the word to be flagged
with a wiggly red underline when I type a space after the final letter
of the word, but the word does not get flagged."

Regards, K.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Owen Thomas
Hello Karl.

Your last paragraph provided the procedure that doesn't behave the same for me. I can type "color" and I get no squiggly underline. I can type "colour" and get no squiggly underline. I can type "aoeioioehhrgaege" and get no squiggly underline.

I select Tools -> Language -> For all Text -> English (Australia). Nothing happens. I try again and notice no tick mark beside what I had just selected.

I go into Tools -> Spelling and Grammar, and the Spelling dialogue box appears under another smaller dialogue box telling me that the spellcheck is complete. I press return to close the smaller dialogue box; the title of the Spelling dialogue box changes to Spelling: [None] and the Text language selection box is populated with "[none]". At this point also I observe that the Text language selection box and gets populated by a single entry: English (USA). I try to select this entry, but when I try, the selection does not change.

Something makes me wonder why, after I click Options... from the Spelling dialogue, three entries appear in the list of User-defined dictionaries: "standard [all]", "technical [all]", and "IgnoreAllList [all]". I didn't create these entries, and I cannot make sense about why they are there; their behaviour while deleting them seems inconsistent.

I hope that is giving you and others a sense of my problem.



On 6 October 2017 at 23:19, Karl Auer <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Fri, 2017-10-06 at 21:50 +1100, Owen Thomas wrote:
> libreoffice-writer:
>   Installed: 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2

I have the same version as you do. I live in Oz, I have several
dictionaries installed including Australian English. If I open a clean
document and type "color" it is flagged as a misspelling with a wiggly
red line underneath it. Same for "humor", "sanitize" and a bunch of
other americanisms. It also flags outright wrong stuff like "hgft". If
I instead type "colour", "humour" and "sanitise", there is no wiggly
red line.

If I change the "Languages" option and make the locale and language
"English (USA)", the americanisms versions lose the wiggly line and the
correctly spelled versions :-) gain one. So to me it all seems to be
working fine. I didn't try going through the Tools menu.

Can you provide a  short procedure that will (on your system) reliably
demonstrate the problem? And what specific indicator you are using for
the problem? E.g., "I type 'humor', I expect the word to be flagged
with a wiggly red underline when I type a space after the final letter
of the word, but the word does not get flagged."

Regards, K.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Owen Thomas
Actually, of the three entries in the User-defined dictionaries, "standard [all]" can be deleted, the Delete button is disabled for "technical [all]" and "IgnoreAllList [all]" does not want to be deleted. I press OK on the options dialogue and Close on the Spelling dialogue, try to do another spell check and go back into the Options dialogue. All the entries are back in the User-defined dictionaries list.

Weird of what?


On 7 October 2017 at 00:08, Owen Thomas <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hello Karl.

Your last paragraph provided the procedure that doesn't behave the same for me. I can type "color" and I get no squiggly underline. I can type "colour" and get no squiggly underline. I can type "aoeioioehhrgaege" and get no squiggly underline.

I select Tools -> Language -> For all Text -> English (Australia). Nothing happens. I try again and notice no tick mark beside what I had just selected.

I go into Tools -> Spelling and Grammar, and the Spelling dialogue box appears under another smaller dialogue box telling me that the spellcheck is complete. I press return to close the smaller dialogue box; the title of the Spelling dialogue box changes to Spelling: [None] and the Text language selection box is populated with "[none]". At this point also I observe that the Text language selection box and gets populated by a single entry: English (USA). I try to select this entry, but when I try, the selection does not change.

Something makes me wonder why, after I click Options... from the Spelling dialogue, three entries appear in the list of User-defined dictionaries: "standard [all]", "technical [all]", and "IgnoreAllList [all]". I didn't create these entries, and I cannot make sense about why they are there; their behaviour while deleting them seems inconsistent.

I hope that is giving you and others a sense of my problem.



On 6 October 2017 at 23:19, Karl Auer <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Fri, 2017-10-06 at 21:50 +1100, Owen Thomas wrote:
> libreoffice-writer:
>   Installed: 1:5.1.6~rc2-0ubuntu1~xenial2

I have the same version as you do. I live in Oz, I have several
dictionaries installed including Australian English. If I open a clean
document and type "color" it is flagged as a misspelling with a wiggly
red line underneath it. Same for "humor", "sanitize" and a bunch of
other americanisms. It also flags outright wrong stuff like "hgft". If
I instead type "colour", "humour" and "sanitise", there is no wiggly
red line.

If I change the "Languages" option and make the locale and language
"English (USA)", the americanisms versions lose the wiggly line and the
correctly spelled versions :-) gain one. So to me it all seems to be
working fine. I didn't try going through the Tools menu.

Can you provide a  short procedure that will (on your system) reliably
demonstrate the problem? And what specific indicator you are using for
the problem? E.g., "I type 'humor', I expect the word to be flagged
with a wiggly red underline when I type a space after the final letter
of the word, but the word does not get flagged."

Regards, K.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Karl Auer
In reply to this post by Owen Thomas
On Sat, 2017-10-07 at 00:08 +1100, Owen Thomas wrote:
> Your last paragraph provided the procedure that doesn't behave the
> same for me. I can type "color" and I get no squiggly underline. I
> can type "colour" and get no squiggly underline. I can type
> "aoeioioehhrgaege" and get no squiggly underline.

What settings do you have in "Tools -> Options... -> Langage Settings?

I have user interface "English (USA)", locale setting "English
(Australia)" and Default language for documents/Western is "English
(Australia)".

> I select Tools -> Language -> For all Text -> English (Australia).

If I create a document with two words "color" and "colour" in it and
use Tools -> Language -> For all Text to toggle between "English
(Australia)" and "English (USA)", the red wiggly line switches between
the two words accordingly.

It seems to be an issue with your LibreOffice install rather than a
generic LibreOffice problem, though there may be a flaw in LibreOffice
that has let it get into that state.

I suggest uninstalling LibreOffice (purge rather than remove) then
installing it again.

Regards, K.


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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Nils Kassube-2
Karl Auer wrote:
> I suggest uninstalling LibreOffice (purge rather than remove) then
> installing it again.

Usually it doesn't help reinstalling an application as the user specific
settings are preserved. I think the user specific settings for L.O. are
located somewhere in "$HOME/.config/libreoffice/". I would rename (or
remove) that directory (while libreoffice isn't running) and check if
the error is still present afterwards.


Nils


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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Karl Auer
On Fri, 2017-10-06 at 16:06 +0200, Nils Kassube wrote:
> Karl Auer wrote:
> > I suggest uninstalling LibreOffice (purge rather than remove) then
> > installing it again.
> Usually it doesn't help reinstalling an application as the user
> specific settings are preserved.

In general "purge" removes configuration as well. From "man apt-get":

   purge is identical to remove except that
   packages are removed and purged (any
   configuration files are deleted too).

Regards, K.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Paul Smith-2
On Sat, 2017-10-07 at 01:20 +1100, Karl Auer wrote:

> On Fri, 2017-10-06 at 16:06 +0200, Nils Kassube wrote:
> > Karl Auer wrote:
> > > I suggest uninstalling LibreOffice (purge rather than remove)
> > > then installing it again.
> >
> > Usually it doesn't help reinstalling an application as the user
> > specific settings are preserved.
>
> In general "purge" removes configuration as well. From "man apt-get":
>
>    purge is identical to remove except that
>    packages are removed and purged (any
>    configuration files are deleted too).

I'm quite confident that this applies only to system-level
configuration.  I would be very surprised if purge walked through all
the individual home directories on the system and deleted all the per-
user configuration.

I agree, far more likely to fix your problem than re-installing the
package is deleting your personal LibreOffice customizations.

One simple way to test this is to create a new user account on the
system with a brand new home directory, and logging in there and trying
your test to see if it works.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Liam Proven
In reply to this post by Owen Thomas
On 6 October 2017 at 12:07, Owen Thomas <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I can't ask this question of ask.libreoffice.org because I can't get past
> the robot detection mechanism - that seems to be broken also. I think Ubuntu
> has to make a decision whether it should find and put resources toward
> making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default installation.

I have to ask...

Why do you assume that something that doesn't work on your computer is
broken for everyone? Is it not likely that an OS used by millions
would see lots of complaints if this kind of problem were in the
shipping version? That reviewers would criticise it, that it would
have been picked up in testing?

Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
with your own installation?

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Xen
Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:

> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
> with your own installation?

Don't blame the user.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Liam Proven
On 6 October 2017 at 17:23, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:
>
>> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
>> with your own installation?
>
> Don't blame the user.

I'm blaming his computer for the problem. But the decision that "spell
check doesn't work, therefore Ubuntu is broken" is Mr Thomas' and
nobody else's.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Xen
Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:32:

> I'm blaming his computer for the problem. But the decision that "spell
> check doesn't work, therefore Ubuntu is broken" is Mr Thomas' and
> nobody else's.

Yes, isolate people and make them feel like an anomaly as soon as they
have issues with the system.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Compdoc@hotrodpc.com

> I'm blaming his computer for the problem.

Ive seen old vid cards and bad video card drivers be unable to properly
support programs and what they draw on the screen...

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Joel Rees
In reply to this post by Liam Proven

2017/10/07 0:34 "Liam Proven" <[hidden email]>:
>
> On 6 October 2017 at 17:23, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:
> >
> >> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
> >> with your own installation?
> >
> > Don't blame the user.
>
> I'm blaming his computer for the problem.

There isn't a lot of difference between blaming a computer without evidence that it is a hardware or firmware problem and blaming the user who ostensibly installed the OS.

> But the decision that "spell
> check doesn't work, therefore Ubuntu is broken" is Mr Thomas' and
> nobody else's.

And that assertion, whether it is valid or not, basically effaces whatever difference there might have been.

You mean well, but a little hand-holding can tell you pretty quickly whether it was effective or a waste of time.

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Colin Law
On 6 October 2017 at 22:11, Joel Rees <[hidden email]> wrote:

> 2017/10/07 0:34 "Liam Proven" <[hidden email]>:
>>
>> On 6 October 2017 at 17:23, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> > Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:
>> >
>> >> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
>> >> with your own installation?
>> >
>> > Don't blame the user.
>>
>> I'm blaming his computer for the problem.
>
> There isn't a lot of difference between blaming a computer without evidence
> that it is a hardware or firmware problem and blaming the user who
> ostensibly installed the OS.

There is a big difference between blaming the user and suggesting that
it is the configuration of the computer (which I suspect was what was
meant).  Configuration can be messed up without the user being at
fault. There is no personal attack involved in suggesting that the
configuration settings may be messed up.  We have all experienced
that.

The OP, however, was clearly attempting to lay blame on the
developers, saying that they "should find and put resources toward
making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default
installation".

Colin

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Joel Rees

2017/10/07 6:20 "Colin Law" <[hidden email]>:
>
> On 6 October 2017 at 22:11, Joel Rees <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > 2017/10/07 0:34 "Liam Proven" <[hidden email]>:
> >>
> >> On 6 October 2017 at 17:23, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >> > Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:
> >> >
> >> >> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
> >> >> with your own installation?
> >> >
> >> > Don't blame the user.
> >>
> >> I'm blaming his computer for the problem.
> >
> > There isn't a lot of difference between blaming a computer without evidence
> > that it is a hardware or firmware problem and blaming the user who
> > ostensibly installed the OS.
>
> There is a big difference between blaming the user and suggesting that
> it is the configuration of the computer (which I suspect was what was
> meant).  Configuration can be messed up without the user being at
> fault. There is no personal attack involved in suggesting that the
> configuration settings may be messed up.  We have all experienced
> that.

Maybe Xen trimmed too much. Liam's original response was just a shade harsh.

> The OP, however, was clearly attempting to lay blame on the
> developers, saying that they "should find and put resources toward
> making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default
> installation".

I suppose you've never been convinced that you've followed all the directions and it still isn't working?

And maybe he's not the only one who finds libre office a difficult experience?

I personally don't think removing it from the default install is a viable option, but I have a hard time recommending it, even with the caveat that formatting will change.

(In my case, I use plain text as much as possible, modulo the hardware problems that currently force me to use this Android tablet. And I've taken to recommending plain text to people I wouldn't have in the past. The current state of the end-user application market is a wasteland.)

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Re: Can anyone tell me what is wrong with LibreOffice?

Owen Thomas
In reply to this post by Colin Law
Well, actually, I was just reporting what I had found, accompanied by some frustration at having a problem.

It is neither my problem nor the software, nor the OS, nor the developers, nor anyone's in particular. I don't see a conspiracy here, however, I think you would understand that there is something of a universal truth in the observation that like any problem you would have, I would like to have this one fixed so I can get on with my life.

On 7 October 2017 at 08:18, Colin Law <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 6 October 2017 at 22:11, Joel Rees <[hidden email]> wrote:
> 2017/10/07 0:34 "Liam Proven" <[hidden email]>:
>>
>> On 6 October 2017 at 17:23, Xen <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> > Liam Proven schreef op 06-10-2017 17:12:
>> >
>> >> Did it not occur to you that it was more likely to be something wrong
>> >> with your own installation?
>> >
>> > Don't blame the user.
>>
>> I'm blaming his computer for the problem.
>
> There isn't a lot of difference between blaming a computer without evidence
> that it is a hardware or firmware problem and blaming the user who
> ostensibly installed the OS.

There is a big difference between blaming the user and suggesting that
it is the configuration of the computer (which I suspect was what was
meant).  Configuration can be messed up without the user being at
fault. There is no personal attack involved in suggesting that the
configuration settings may be messed up.  We have all experienced
that.

The OP, however, was clearly attempting to lay blame on the
developers, saying that they "should find and put resources toward
making Libre Office function, or remove it from the default
installation".

Colin

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