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  1. #1
    Senior Member t34b4g5's Avatar
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    Talking Google distributing free Sun software.

    Google distributing free Sun software


    Thursday Aug 16 08:18 AEST
    AP - Two years after announcing a somewhat vague software-distribution partnership, Google Inc and Sun Microsystems Inc have clarified their tactics for jointly attacking Microsoft Corp and its ubiquitous Office software.
    Google quietly began including Sun's StarOffice suite of word processing, spreadsheets and other workplace-oriented programs for free as part of the Google Pack download.
    The download package is part of Google's efforts to expand beyond web search and control more of users' computing experience online and offline. It already includes Firefox, the No. 2 web browser behind Microsoft's Internet Explorer, and RealNetworks Inc's RealPlayer, a key rival to Microsoft's own media player.
    By adding Sun's software, Google is giving a valuable endorsement to a server and software maker that saw demand for its products collapse after the dot-com bust and has struggled to return to sustained profitability ever since.
    StarOffice is Sun's commercial version of the freely distributed OpenOffice suite, which also was developed by Sun and has been downloaded about 100 million times.
    StarOffice typically costs $US70 ($A84) to download but is being distributed by Google for free. It has more features than OpenOffice and typically includes technical support from Sun, though the free Google version won't.
    Both companies declined to comment on their financial arrangement.
    Rich Green, Sun's executive vice president of software, said Sun has also added internet search capabilities to all of its StarOffice products. That will allow users, for example, to highlight terms in a word processing document and search immediately for those terms online - through Google, of course.
    "It's a paradigm shift," Green said in an interview. "It brings together office productivity, networking and search into one offering."
    The partnership announced in October 2005 between Mountain View-based Google and Santa-Clara based Sun had been light on details.
    The companies only said then that users who download Sun's Java software, which is needed to run a variety of web applications, would also have the option of downloading Google's search toolbar, and that they would work closely in the future to promote and distribute each other's software.
    Google said in a statement that the company believes "users will benefit from access to a free, full-featured office suite for the desktop. And we've also always believed that users should have choice in their online and PC experience."

    Unfortunatly you have to download it with the Google Pack, but you can just uncheck everything else and just download starOffice.

    Get It Here.!

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    I saw that the other day on digg. Is star office any good though?

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    Senior Member t34b4g5's Avatar
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    Smile

    I'm playing around with it at the moment, and it's pretty nice indeed.

  4. #4
    AO übergeek phishphreek's Avatar
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    Staroffice has been around forever. IIRC, it was distributed free at one time for personal use... and the OSS community loved it. They they started charging for it and OpenOffice was launched (forked) shortly after? Staroffice fell off the map as far as OSS is concerned. It was just a pay version of OpenOffice... why pay for it?

    I'm not sure why google would choose Staroffice over OpenOffice... Maybe the people over at Sun will agree to bundle the stupid google desktop and OpenOffice won't? lol

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/StarOffice#History

    Here is an old comparison between SO and OO.
    http://www.sun.com/software/star/ope...arison_OOo.pdf

    There isn't *that* much of a difference... when you take in consideration a lot of the stuff that SO includes can be found elsewhere for OO. Thanks for the creative commons.
    Last edited by phishphreek; August 16th, 2007 at 01:34 PM.
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  5. #5
    Right turn Clyde Nokia's Avatar
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    It's a brave market for them to step into.

    Whilst competition to Microsoft's products is very healthy for the end user (without competition MS can continue to charge what they like for their software) the Office market is an area that IMHO will remain dominated by MS for as long as the majority of users have Exchange, SharePoint, OCS, Active Directory etc on their LAN's.

    The integration with MS is second to none and their Office package is very good - I can't imagine too many people honestly saying that MS Office is crap.

    Even if StarOffice is 10 times better than MS Office, unless it integrates with a Domain and the various Domain services then end [business] users will more than likely stay with MS.

    It could be a rival for MS Works maybe - for home users/students etc but definitely not the business place, which is where most of the money is......

    Google is probably one of the only firms that have the capacity, foresight and willingness to take on MS in various areas - and by teaming up with other organisations they can increase the scope of rival products they can roll out - ( I reckon a Google OS is not too far off ), but I think they will struggle to be a serious competitor with Office.
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    I install and use Open Office on my home machines.... and for users who cant find or dont have office disks and somehow expect me to just install MS office on thier machine with out a disk or key

    It allows users to open, edit and save documents in the MS format.

    Great solution for a home user....although I do agree with Nokia...you cant beat the functionality and integration of the MS products for business.

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    Last edited by morganlefay; August 16th, 2007 at 03:01 PM.
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    Senior Member Godsrock37's Avatar
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    My lil bro reinstalled his PC and messed up the Microsoft Office 2003 install so that he could no longer register with the key we had. My dad was pissed and said he needed office for school, so i gave him open office and thunderbird. My lil bro didnt care that much, i showed him the few differences and my dad was pissed but he couldnt really tell the difference. I agree with morgan though, in a business setup you gotta go with MS office for integration and making sure stuff is compatible. I was thinking about playing with sun office but you guys basically said it was the same thing.

    While we're talking about office software, anyone played with MS Office 2007 Business?

    I wanted to get it but wasnt sure it was worth the $400 or whatever ridiculous amount it was.
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  8. #8
    Right turn Clyde Nokia's Avatar
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    It's good, but is very much aimed at business users that need integration with other services. If it is just you at home or a very small business on a non domain LAN then there is no real value in upgrading from 2003 IMHO.
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    Senior Member Aardpsymon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nokia
    The integration with MS is second to none and their Office package is very good - I can't imagine too many people honestly saying that MS Office is crap.

    Even if StarOffice is 10 times better than MS Office, unless it integrates with a Domain and the various Domain services then end [business] users will more than likely stay with MS.
    I've said it before and its relavent again. The only reason I don't push firefox out over our network is because we can't lock down the settings the way we can with IE.

    Heres another point - even if StarOffice is 10 times better than MS Office the average end user won't notice. MS Word has plenty of features I never use or even need. I don't care if star office is better at something I never do. (Not that I won't be taking a look of course) Too many intelligent techy types forget that they are not the normal and that most users DON'T spend hours figuring out every possible way to use their pc and just want to type a document as quickly as possible.
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  10. #10
    Right turn Clyde Nokia's Avatar
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    Roll out any combination of SharePoint, OCS, Exchange, Outlook and Office for a month on an Active Directory domain and then substitute Office and Outlook for Open Source alternative...trust me every user will notice.

    If it is being used a just a stand alone office package then yes I agree most users won't notice, however if it is being used on a domain and integrated into other domain services then most users will notice straight away, and when something takes 5 seconds longer to do due to a change that emanated from the IT dept then they will complain.
    Last edited by Nokia; August 16th, 2007 at 08:24 PM.
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