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9 LibreOffice Features You Should Avoid Using

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LibreOffice is essential to the Linux desktop. However, it is also burdened by useless baggage—features that are hopelessly obsolete today and should never be used by anyone hoping to create an impression.

I'm not talking about features like master documents in Writer that have become less useful as the average amount of RAM on a workstation has risen into the gigabytes. Nor am I talking about the interface, which, although serviceable, is decidedly uninspired. Still less am I talking about features such as the fields for hidden text or paragraphs that have only a handful of users but remain essential for rare yet sophisticated purposes.

Rather, I am talking about features that make users look clueless—features that encourage typographical nightmares of illegibility or excess. Some of these features look as though they might date to LibreOffice's first incarnation as StarWriter in 1984, because they result in the kind of excess that people used to commit when office suites were new. Certainly, in the decade that Sun Microsystems oversaw the code, very little was done to update it with the result that much of the code has a nineties-like look to it.

But regardless of when they were added, here are nine features in LibreOffice—and its cousin Apache OpenOffice—that you should think twice about using unless you are trying to re-create some of the monstrosities of the early decades of the office suite. Although some have occasional uses, most of the time applying them means being laughed at for your incompetence. Fortunately, few are essential, and those that are can be replaced by more reliable features.

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