Installing OpenOffice.org 2.3 on Fedora, Red Hat and Centos Linux

By Frank Cox

(September 24, 2007)


I wrote the original version of this article on September 22, 2007. On September 24, Robin Laing suggested that I add a section on how to install the Sun Java Media Framework for people who want to use videos and sound in their OpenOffice.org Impress presentations.


OpenOffice.org, the free and very good office suite of programs (word processor, database, spreadsheet, presentation manager) is distributed with Fedora, Red Hat and Centos Linux. However, the version that is distributed with the operating systems is not exactly the same as the “official version” that can be downloaded from http://www.openoffice.org. Plus, the version at http://www.openoffice.org tends to be newer than the ones that have made it into Fedora, Red Hat and Centos directly.

This article describes how to install the “official” OpenOffice.org 2.3 directly from http://www.openoffice.org.

Get Sun Java Runtime Environment

OpenOffice.org requires Sun Java to do some of the stuff that it does. Sun Java is also handy for other things, notably as a Firefox plugin.

Download Sun Java Runtime Environment

(a) go to http://java.sun.com

(b) click on "Java SE" under the "Popular Downloads" heading.

(c) click on the download button beside "Java Runtime Environment (JRE) 6 Update 2"

(d) Click on "Accept license agreement"

(e) Click on "Linux self-extracting file (build 05)". Note that you DO NOT WANT the rpm file that is also available on that web page. You want the file named jre-6u2-linux-i586.bin.

Install Sun Java Runtime Environment

In the remainder of this article, the commands that you type into the terminal are printed in blue.

Become root user.

chmod 774 jre-6u2-linux-i586.bin

mkdir /opt/java

cd /opt/java

./jre-6u2-linux-i586.bin (You must put the path to where-ever you downloaded jre-6u2-linux-i586.bin in front of the filename instead of the ./ that I put here.)

exit

Download and install OpenOffice.org 2.3

Download the OpenOffice WITHOUT JAVA from http://www.openoffice.org. The filename that you want is Ooo_2.3.0_LinuxIntel_install_en-US.tar.gz.

tar xvzf OOo_2.3.0_LinuxIntel_install_en-US.tar.gz

Become root user again

yum remove openoffice.org-core

cd OOG680_m5_native_packed-1_en-US.9221/RPMS

rpm -i *.rpm

cd desktop-integration

rpm -i openoffice.org-redhat-menus-2.3-9215.noarch.rpm

echo exclude=openoffice* >> /etc/yum.conf

exit

Tell OpenOffice.org 2.3 where to find Java Runtime Environment

Load OpenOffice.org Writer from by clicking on "Main menu - Office - OpenOffice.org 2.3 Writer"

Click on "Tools - Options - Java"

Click on "Add"

Point the file selector to /opt/java/jre1.6.0_02

Click OK

Optional Procedure: Install Sun Java Media Framework

If you want to be able to use sound and video in OpenOffice.org Impress presentations, you must install the Sun Java Media Framework (JMF). If you don't use OpenOffice.org Impress, or if you don't require sound in your presentations, then you can skip this step.

Download JMF

Go to http://java.sun.com/products/java-media/jmf/2.1.1/download.html and download jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin .

Edit JMF installer so it will work on Red Hat, Fedora and Centos

Red Hat, Fedora and Centos use a slightly different tail command than the JMF installer expects. Therefore you must edit jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin to use the correct syntax. Do not attempt to edit jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin with a word processor or a regular text editor as it is a binary file that can easily get messed up. The simplest way to edit the file is to use vi.

vi jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin

Now type the following keystrokes, as shown in blue:

?

tail

Move the cursor to the space after the word tail using the cursor keys.

i

-n

Hit the space bar.

Now that line should look like this:

tail -n +309 $0 > $outname

(We have added the -n to this line.)

Now save the file using these keystrokes:

<ESC>

:wq

(<ESC> means to hit the ESC key on your keyboard)

Install JMF to /opt directory

Now become the root user and type the following commands, as shown in blue:

chmod 774 jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin

cd /opt

./jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin (You must put the path to where-ever you downloaded jmf-2_1_1e-linux-i586.bin in front of the filename instead of the ./ that I put here.)

Set up OpenOffice.org to use JMF

Load OpenOffice.org Writer from by clicking on "Main menu - Office - OpenOffice.org 2.3 Writer"

Click on "Tools - Options - Java"

Click on "Class Path"

Point the file selector to /opt/JMF-2.1.1e/lib/jmf.jar

Click OK

OpenOffice.org 2.3 Installation Complete

Now you're done. Enjoy using OpenOffice.org 2.3 on your Fedora, Red Hat or Centos computer.



Other articles written by Frank Cox can be found here.

Frank Cox owns and operates the Melville Theatre in Melville, Saskatchewan, Canada, and has been playing with computers for about 30 years.

September 24, 2007

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