LibreOffice, a free and open-source office suite
LibreOffice free, open source Office Suite
LibreOffice free, open source Office Suite

For home office and school: LibreOffice is a free, open-source Office Suite alternative to Microsoft Office. It offers you a word processor (Writer), the ability to create and edit spreadsheets (Calc), presentation (Impress), editors for vector and raster graphics with diagramming tools (Draw), as well as database (Base) and mathematical tools (Math).

LibreOffice Writer
LibreOffice Writer

This means the free LibreOffice practically provides everything an office suite offers. In addition to many other formats, Microsoft formats such as DOC and DOCX are also supported. If you would like the created documents to be usable with Microsoft Office, something I would highly recommend, you need to remember when initially saving not to use the LibreOffice default formats for that document, but to instead “Save as” and you then select “.doc”, “docx” for MS Word, one of the Powerpoint formats “.ppt”, “pptx” for newer MS versions or for spreadsheets for Excel “.xlsx” and so on. Without that, a user of Microsoft Office might not be able to open the respective documents. LibreOffice has the option to save documents in .PDF format.

Set the default File format to .DOCX

LibreOffice: Set Default File Formats
LibreOffice: Set Default File Formats

To set the default file format for text documents in LibreOffice Writer to .DOCX as in MS Office, open Writer, then go to

  • Tools => Options => Load/Save => General
  • Under “Save” => Default File Format and ODF Settings, set for Document Type => “Text document” => “Always save as” for example to “Word 2007 – 365 (*.docx)”, of course assuming you use MS Word version 2007 or more recent to open this. Next time you create a Text document, it will by default save it, just like in MS Word in DOCX format, not the default ODT.
    If you use the other programs, you can if you want also change the default file formats to the MS Office defaults, such as Powerpoint 2007 – 365 (*.PPTX) for Impress instead of the default (*.ODP), so it works with MS Powerpoint by opening the respective program and going to Tools and selecting the corresponding Document Type.

So if you do office work or have to do some school or university work requiring one of the programs in MS Office and probably need an alternative or cannot afford it, this is a great alternative, for free.

System Requirements:
  • Linux x64 (deb), Linux x64 (rpm)
  • Mac OS X, macOS x86_64 (10.12 or newer)
  • Windows 7, 8, 10+
    Windows x86_64 (Windows 7, 8, 10+)
  • Unofficial: Android and iOS, Chrome OS and Solaris
Publisher: LibreOffice, The Document Foundation

Download page:

File Size: About 325 MB (LibreOffice_7.2.5_Win_x64.msi)
Price: Freeware, open-source
Alternatives: OpenOffice, Google Workspace, SoftMaker FreeOffice