Open Source

Review: OpenOffice PDF Import Extension

The Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension is a free and easy to install extension for Open Office that makes editing PDF documents easy.

PDF documents are often a business's bread and butter. And some businesses spend mightily on PDF creation/editing tools. But if your budget is nothing like the big players, you might find yourself unable to take care of some of the necessary tasks associated with PDF files. One such task is directly editing a PDF file. This task should be simple, but most often it is made either too costly or complex for small businesses to tackle. That is where the Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension comes in. This free, easy to install extension for Open Office makes editing PDF documents easy.

Specifications

Who's it for?

The Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension is for anyone on a budget that needs to be able to directly edit non-hybrid PDF documents. And because the extension imports into OpenOffice.org Draw, editing is very user-friendly.

What problem does it solve?

The Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension solves the problem of being able to quickly edit a PDF document even though your budget doesn't allow the purchase of costly PDF editing tools. The PDF extension also does not require substantial hardware (anything that will run OpenOffice 3.x will run the extension) so hardware should not be a problem for anyone.

Standout features

  • Import password-protected files
  • Each line of text automatically converted to text object
  • Easy importing
  • Easy installation
  • Converts images and vector graphics
  • Automatic font replacement when font is not installed on PC

What's wrong?

There are a few problems with the extension, such as:

  • No support for native PDF forms
  • No paragraph support
  • Large PDF imports can be painfully slow
  • No table conversion
  • No support for EPS graphics

Another issue is support - the only route for support I can find is feedback to the developers at dev@graphics.openoffice.org.

Competitive Products:

Bottom line for business

If you are looking to be able to edit PDF files, without having to spend your entire budget on the required tools, you should give the Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension a try. Just don't expect to be able to edit fairly complex or large PDF documents.

User rating

Have you encountered or used Sun OpenOffice.org PDF Import Extension? If so, what do you think? Rate your experience and compare the results to what other TechRepublic members think. Give your own personal review in the TechRepublic Community Forums or let us know if you think we left anything out in our review.

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About Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.

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