Install LibreOffice 4.0 in Ubuntu 12.10

25 Mar


LibreOffice, the successor of – or let’s just say fork, before I get harassed by the Apache OpenOffice community -, saw its 4.0 version released a few weeks ago (on the 7th of February to be precise). The bugfix version 4.0.2 should be released next week (check out The Document Foundation’s release plan), which means that more users would like to install it as it is getting more stable.

LibreOffice 4.0 splash

The brand new “splash” image for LibreOffice 4.0

LO 4.0 comes with a number of new features, including:

  • Attaching comments to text ranges in Writer
  • Many import and export support improvements for DOCX, RTF and PPTX formats
  • New conditional formats in Calc
  • Automatic rotation of a chart’s axis labels if overlapping, and capacity to export a chart directly as a picture in Calc
  • A number of new functions in Calc
  • An Impress presentation can now be remote-controlled from an Android phone
  • Improved handling of videos in Impress
  • Four new open-source font families
  • Possibility to send documents via Bluetooth
  • Import filter for Microsoft Publisher format and extended filter for Visio format
  • Better display quality for pictures
  • Styles can be directly previewed in the drop-down box
  • Unity integration is improved
  • Firefox Personas are supported to personalize your window
  • And lots more stuff that you can check out in this full list or in this fancier-looking version.

With the launch of this version (which changed it’s name from 3.7 to 4.0 a few months ago), The Document Foundation renewed its façade with their schmick brand new website.

LibreOffice new website

The new façade of LibreOffice, launched with its 4.0 version

However, this is just a few pages to present the software. Most of the information is still in the older-looking pages.

In Ubuntu 12.10, the default version is 3.6. If you want to enjoy the new features and fixes, as well as keep up to date with the 4.0 cycle’s security updates, you will have to add a PPA (“Personal Package Archive”) to your software sources. Don’t sigh, it’s effing easy.


Now, here are the easy steps to achieve this, lucky bugger:

  1. Open a terminal by using the keyboard shortcut CTRL + ALT + T
  2. Copy and paste this line, press enter and follow the prompts:
    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:libreoffice/libreoffice-4-0
  3. Copy and paste this next one when Terminal stops talking:
    sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
  4. You should then have the newest version of LibreOffice.


Beware: if you have another LibreOffice PPA installed, you might have problems with packages being kept back for a dependency issue, even if you delete it beforehand. To avoid this, make sure you purge the old PPA, which means that you go back to the original package versions that are in the official repositories.

To do this, run the following commands in a terminal before installing the new LibreOffice PPA (copy-paste, replace the PPA name by the right one, press enter, follow the prompts):

sudo apt-get install ppa-purge

sudo ppa-purge ppa:nameoftheppa


If this is not enough, you might have to chase down the naughty package that messes everything up, by trying to figure out what the unmet dependency is. A good way to figure this out is to try and install problematic packages on their own. For example, the problem I encountered previously was related to libexttextcat-data having a higher version number than needed. I figured it out by trying to install the main LibreOffice package (libreoffice-core), which told me that libexttextcat was problematic, and then trying to install libexttextcat on its own, which told me about libexttextcat-data being a shit. I had to uninstall this package, and everything went swell afterwards.

There you go! Hopefully this can help a few!


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