Myths of Ability

A (multimedia) writer goes technical., a Libre alternative to Microsoft 365

Categories: technology products Information Technology Operating Systems Self Improvement

Opendesktop dot org is a ‘Libre’ stab at Microsoft 365 which may not offer as much as the latter, but still gives you enough to work and collaborate, minus the email options (Microsoft 365 gets you Outlook and a terrabyte of storage while you have no email options and five gigs storage with ). gives you the full Libreoffice suite, collaboration tools, contacts, calendar, and messaging, among other things. It is imperfect and in constant development, but usable. As someone who works on both desk and laptop computers, it is useful to have something like to keep and access files between devices. While Microsoft 365 does give you the full office suite, Outlook is limited unless you are willing to pay for additional features. A case in point is only one e-mail address per domain name and for each additional address you pay a fee. For example, name@domain, billing@domain, peronal@domain, and so on. Those extra names add up! There are better offers for email services elsewhere that give you more for less money, such as multiple names at a domain without paying extra. is an iteration of NextCloud, an online collaboration platform that runs LibreOffice tools and stores attendant files. There are many companies that offer NextCloud, and just happens to be a free version of such. If you, or your business/institution need larger capacity, a lot of companies offer this for modest pricing relative to Microsoft. provides a whole lot at once and that can be problematic. Too many moving parts in a project can lead to complications and breakdowns. The fact that the suite does not fully work is telling. However, if the development team can eventually juggle all these things and keep them in the air, more power to them (and us). Currently, some parts of breaks, but not the critical stuff like storage and office applications.

The things that break, like clicking ‘Music’ ( a music sharing platform? ) is frustrating but when you click 'Weather' on dashboard, you get cool graphics on local weather movements. I have used for a couple of months so far and like it. It is generous for a free service and I am glad not to have used funds on Microsoft. For now, there is "free and good enough" and this is currently sufficient to fit my needs.