KOffice 2.0 Beta1 Released

The KOffice team is proud to announce the first beta of KOffice 2.0. The goal of this release is to gather feedback from both users and developers on the new UI and underlying infrastructure. This will allow us to release a usable 2.0 release, demonstrating our vision for the future of the digital office to a larger audience and attract new contributions both in terms of code and ideas for improvements. Read on for more information or see the announcement and download it from the release notes.

This is the first beta release of KOffice 2.0, and the first version we encourage users to download and try out. After a very long development cycle KOffice is now in feature freeze. The development team will from now on shift focus from new features to bug fixes until 2.0 is released.

The release team has decided that the following applications are mature enough to be part of 2.0:

  • KWord, Word processor
  • KSpread, Spreadsheet calculator
  • KPresenter, Presentation manager
  • KPlato, Project management software
  • Karbon, Vector graphics editor
  • Krita, Raster graphics editor

The chart application KChart is available as a shape plugin, which means that charts are available in all the KOffice applications in an integrated manner.

Highlights of KOffice 2.0

KOffice 2 will be a much more flexible application suite than KOffice 1 ever was. The integration between the components is much stronger, with the revolutionary Flake Shapes as the central concept. A Flake Shape can be as simple as a square or a circle or as complex as a chart or a music score.

With Flake, any KOffice application can handle any shape. For instance, KWord can embed bitmap graphics, Krita can embed vector graphics and Karbon can embed charts. This flexibility does not only give KOffice unprecedented integration, but also allows new applications to be created very easily. Such applications could target special user groups such as children or certain professions.

Unified Look and Feel

All the applications of KOffice have a new GUI layout better suited to today's wider screens. The GUI consists of a workspace and a sidebar where tools can dock. Any tool can be ripped off to create its own window and later be redocked for full flexibility. The users setup preferences are of course saved and reused the next time that KOffice is started.

Platform Independence

All of KOffice is available on Linux with KDE or GNOME, Windows and Macintosh. Solaris will follow shortly and we expect builds for other Unix versions to become available soon after the final release. Since KOffice builds on Qt and the KDE libraries, all applications integrate well with the respective platforms and will take on the native look and feel.

Native Support for OpenDocument

KOffice uses the OpenDocument Format as its native format. This will guarantee interoperation with many other Office packages such as OpenOffice.org and MS Office. The KOffice team has representatives on the OASIS technical committee for ODF and has been a strong participant in the process of shaping ODF since its inception.

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by Sebastian (not verified)

I suggest filing a bug report with this wish. There it is guaranteed that a developer reads it.

by Evan "JabberWok... (not verified)

That's a horrible suggestion. File a bug report to get an answer as to if a given feature has been implemented yet? That's a heck of a way to flood the bug database with queries about features that already are complete.

by JRT (not verified)

There is an issue with platform independence that users of Open Office are probably familiar with since there is an option to deal with it. The problem is that a document will print longer in Windows than with *NIX (actually, it is printing with the Windows printer driver) -- you will only notice this on long documents and probably won't notice it if you use right justification.

The reason for this is IIUC, that Windows print drivers glyphs hinted at the printer resolution while *NIX uses the absolute size of the unhinted glyphs.

Does KOffice-2 have a way to deal with this issue?

by asdf (not verified)

hello, dont understand me wrong, i dont want to make the software bad.

but i find it unusable after playing around like 10 minutes. Did you somehow made contact with the Usability Team ? they can provide you with Tipps...

by Sebastian (not verified)

Does it crash or what do you mean?

by sfdg (not verified)

yes it crashes (i will add bugsreports to bugs.kde.org) and help testing, and i cant find the options i need.

the "normal" thing for me is the following:(kword)

- first care about the text, write down all the stuff you need
- then do proper formatting, or leave the formatting to the hopefully excellent template i chose @ start

i dont get it how it is meant to work with kword (but could be i dont get the work philosophy here)

by Jake (not verified)

You will not release it to opensuse too...?
not rpm-packets? only src...

by Cyrille Berger (not verified)

We don't do any packaging, it's up to the distribution to do the packaging. That said, there are OpenSuSE packages in the build service, as for being mentionned in the release notes, it's up to the distribution to contact us.

by cirehawk (not verified)

I've tried the last 2 KOffice alpha versions and now the beta1 version. In each case, KWord has not saved shapes within the document. In other words, I type some text, add a shape, save the file and close. However, when I open the file again, only the text is there and not the shape. This is a pretty basic feature, and if it doesn't work KWord is pretty much unusable for anything other than typing text. Does anyone else have this problem? I'm using it with OpenSUSE.

Other than that, KOffice 2 is looking pretty good.

by cirehawk (not verified)


I tried saving a shape in KSpread and it doesn't save as well. However, shpes seem to be successfully saving in KPresenter.

by Johannes Simon (not verified)

Most of the code to save the shapes already exists, and the two or three lines in KWord that trigger the saving of shapes are simply uncommented atm, due to lack of time to write the rest of the KWord-specific code. I'm sure you will see it in the next beta :-)

by cirehawk (not verified)

Thanks for the feedback. It's good to know shape save ability will be in the next beta. Though it does give me a little concern that there won't be much time to thoroughly test it out before an official release. Be that as it may, keep doing the great work you guys are doing. I really want KOffice to succeed and try to use it as much as possible, though often times I have to resort to using Open Office. Looking forward to the next beta.

by Cyrille Berger (not verified)

On a side note, such a bug is considered as release critical, meaning that KOffice 2.0 won't be released as final until there is a known data loss at saving (among other things ;) ).