[conspire] OpenOffice.org -> LibreOffice, round two

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Wed Oct 20 12:57:34 PDT 2010

Quoting Don Marti (dmarti at zgp.org):

> Here's the fun part: _server_-side OpenOffice.  If you
> thought it was difficult to handle on the desktop...

That's interesting.  Here's more:

   Chapter 46. OpenOffice.org server installation
   Open Office Server Daemon based on older daemon written in python
   (oood). Open Office is unstable as a server (memory leaks, not
   multithreaded, ...), this daemon makes it working in long-term without
   having to change anything in your code.
   PHOPO.org is a OpenOffice server with a PHP implementation. Its 
   goals are to allow certain OpenOffice manipulations from a Web or 
   network interface.
   Q:  how do you use OpenOffice on a headless box?  Curious as to what
       the goal is.
   A:  The purpose is to use it as a document conversion server. It
       automatically converts documents on demand from .doc => .odt => .pdf,
       whatever you want.  Most popular approach is using jodconverter:
       See - http://www.artofsolving.com/opensource/jodconverter
       Software using OpenOffice.org as a server include:
         - KnowledgeTree  
         - OpenMeetings 
         - Alfresco - http://www.alfresco.com/
   OpenOffice can be used in headless mode, but it has not been built to
   handle a lot of requests in a stressfull production environment.
   Using OpenOffice in headless mode has several issues:
    * The process might die/become unavailable.
    * There are several memory leaks issues.
    * Opening several OpenOffice "workers" does not scale as expected,
      and needs some tweaking to really have different open proccesses
      (having several OpenOffice copies, several services, running under
      different users.)
    As suggested, jodconverter can be used to access the OpenOffice process.

Apparently, headless OO.o is pretty unstable and of course requires 
gobs of memory in typical deployments, because you need to run quite a
few instances.

Alternative cited at the last URL:

   you can try this:
   its an opensource java based library that allows you to work with open
   office documents without open office, thus removing the need for the

Part of the problem is that OO.o was not designed for concurrency 
(e.g., not multithreaded).  There _used_ to be (not sure if there 
is any more) a market for expensive server-edition variants of major
proprietary word processors, e.g., WordPerfect.

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