Open or use MS Office Documents in Linux or FreeBSD

last updated in Categories FreeBSD, Linux desktop, Tips

Often I receive MS Office documents. So how do you open MS Office Documents in Linux or FreeBSD desktop system.


Any files created with MS-Office application such as word, excel, powerpoint can be open/updated with OpenOffice.Org office application. OpenOffice.Org works all Linux distro and *BSD operating system. Another important thing is you need to import fonts from Windows to Linux to avoid formatting problem.

However you will be not able to open document created with Digital Rights Management (DRM) protection. Please note that DRM protection only available in Office 2003. base can read/update MS Access database as well. However it is possible that you may loss formatting (this is quite rare).

Other options

=> Use Wine under Linux to run MS Office natively.
=> If you don’t have Linux GUI/desktop system installed, try less command to open word documents or use command line utilities such as catdoc or catppt.


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.