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User Data

User Data

Set User Data in this module. The data inserted here identifies the document author, as it shows on File → Properties → General tab.

With a Writer document, for example, the program uses this data to define what needs to be done when you open an existing document. If the user information matches with the author information, Writer automatically opens the document on the last edited point. If the information does not match, the document opens on the first page.


AOO Options OpenOfficeGeneral.PNG

In the "General" module, set preferences for program help, document status, save/print/open dialogue boxes, and years.



Define how to present tool tips. A tool tip is a small window of information that appears when your cursor hovers over a toolbar button or (on Writer) a footnote anchor. The "Tips" option is selected by default. Select "Extended tips" for more information.


Help Agent

The Help Agent opens each time you perform a new task in Writer. It opens in a small window in the bottom right corner of the document. Click the Help Agent to view bundled help with information related to the task. If you do not click the Help Agent, it closes after a few seconds. If you ignore or close it three times for that specific task, it disappears. To reset the Help Agent to the default status, press  Reset Help Agent .

The "Help formatting" drop-down menu defines how the help is presented: normal or high contrast.

Document Status

Select "Document status" to change the status of the document to "document modified" after printing.

Open/Save/Print Dialog

On some operating systems or desktop environments you may see Open/Save/Print dialog options. If selected, OpenOffice dialog boxes appear when you open/save/print. If unselected, your operating system's dialog box appears.

Year (two digits)

Define the span of time you want Writer to interpret years presented as two digits (for example '18).


AOO Options OpenOfficeMemory.PNG

In the "Memory" module, indicate the amount of memory Writer uses by the program.


Set the number of steps recorded on the "Undo" option. The default is 100 steps; for example, you can undo up to 100 steps in the document.

Graphics cache

Set the number of objects inserted that must be maintained in memory when editing a document. You can also set the amount of memory assigned to each graphic. On some systems, augmenting those values may lead to slightly better performance.

Quick start

Enable/disable the "quick start." "Quick start" is a small program that loads Apache OpenOffice on the system start-up and lives on the system tray. It gives several options on a right-click menu, like quickly creating new documents.



AOO Options OpenOfficeView.PNG

In the "View" module, control how Apache OpenOffice's user interface is presented on the screen. These settings do not affect the formatting or style of the document itself. Set "View" to your preferred user experience.

User Interface


Sets the size of the font used for the help files and menus. To make menu items larger and easier to see, use the arrows to set a value larger than 100%.

Icon size and style

Icon size sets the size of the icons that appear in toolbars.

  • Automatic: scales to a size appropriate to your system.
  • Small: smaller than the default size.
  • Large: larger than the default size.

Icon style sets the icon theme.

  • Automatic: selects a theme appropriate for your system and desktop.
  • Galaxy: the default theme for Apache OpenOffice.
  • High Contrast: Some may find this theme easier to read.


Use system font for user interface

Select this option to use your operating system's default font for the Apache OpenOffice user interface.


Icons in menus

Selects if toolbar icons are also displayed beside menu text items.

  • Automatic: displays icons if your system and desktop allows it.
  • Hide: displays only text menu items.
  • Show: displays toolbar icons beside text menu items.

Font Lists

Show preview of fonts

Select this option to display the drop-down list of available fonts in the font they represent. For example, "Arial" displays in the drop-down list in the Arial font.

Show font history

Select this option to display the the most recent fonts you used at the top of the font drop-down list.

Graphics output

Use hardware acceleration

Select this option to use your computer's hardware acceleration capabilities. This speeds up the display of graphics in your document; this is helpful if your document has many graphics.


Use Anti-Aliasing

Select this option to display graphics in your document using anti-aliasing. This makes graphics look smoother on screen, however your computer may run slower.



Mouse positioning

Sets the cursor's position when a dialog box is opened.

  • Default button: the cursor appears over the main command button. For example, when the Save dialog box opens, the cursor automatically appears over  Save .
  • Dialog center: the cursor appears at the center of the dialog box.
  • No automatic positioning: the cursor remains where it is when the dialog box opens.

Middle mouse button

Sets the function of your mouse's middle button while in an Apache OpenOffice document.

  • No function: The middle button is nonfunctional.
  • Automatic scrolling: Scroll through the document by clicking the middle button and moving the mouse pointer above or below that position.
  • Paste clipboard: Paste contents of the clipboard where the cursor is located.



Sets the transparency of selected text. A higher percentage makes a darker highlight; a lower percentage makes a lighter highlight. Deselect the option if you want the highlighted area to appear as white text on a black background.


In the "Print" module, set options to reduce graphics in your document, and to receive warnings about problems before printing.

Reduce print data

Sometimes the graphical elements of a document have such a large file size that it creates problems for printers. The Print dialog reduces the file size of the document's graphics at the cost of lower print quality.

Select Settings for Printer if you are sending your document to a printer to print on paper. Select Settings for Print to file if you are printing to file in a format such as Microsoft XPS or PDF.


Reduce Transparency

Select this option to reduce the file size of graphics with transparent elements.

  • Automatically: Apache OpenOffice chooses the amount of reduction for best results.
  • No transparency: transparent graphic elements are not printed.

Reduce bitmaps

Select this option to reduce the file size of bitmap graphics in your document.

  • High print quality: Prints document in high quality.
  • Normal print quality: Prints document in printer's normal quality.
  • Resolution: Use the drop-down menu to select a resolution in DPI. Check the Include transparent objects box if you want transparent graphics to also be reduced.

Reduce gradients

Select this option to reduce the file size of gradients.

  • Gradient stripes: The gradient is reduced to stripes. Use the up and down arrows to select the maximum number of stripes.
  • Intermediate color: The gradient prints in an intermediate color.

Convert colors to grayscale

Select this option to print colors in grayscale.

Printer warnings

Select this option to display printer warnings.

  • Paper size: The dimensions of your document do not match the capabilities of the printer.
  • Paper Orientation: The orientation of your document does not match the capabilities of the printer.
  • Transparency: If selected, it issues a warning when a document to be printed contains a transparent graphic.


In the "Paths" module, set the default paths: where documents are saved, where templates are stored, the gallery, and so forth.

To modify a path, select the path you want to change and press  Edit .

The  Default  button returns the paths to their default values.

On a default configuration, beside the localization of temporary files and the default folder to save documents, most paths point to the user profile.


In the"Color" module, modify the default colors or create new ones that will be immediately available on every Apache OpenOffice component.

Apache OpenOffice comes with a series of predefined colors that can be used on the different components. For example, you may assign color to a fill on a graphical object, to text, or to a paragraph background.

Create a new color

Create a new color by selecting an existing one from the table. Write a new name under "Name" and press  Add . A new color, identical to the one selected but with the new name, is created. Press  Edit  to define the color.


There are several ways to define the color:

  • Graphically: Select a color on the vertical bar. Drag your mouse up and down until you find a desired color. Alternately, click the small circle inside the box of hues and drag your mouse inside the box until you find a desired color.
  • Written: Set the the color coordinates. Choose from RGB (with red, green and blue values or by the hexadecimal code), CMYK or HSB.

Press  OK . The square broken into two colors represents the original color (on top) and the new color you created (on bottom). Press  Modify  to set those changes. You can now apply the new color to text, fill, or graphics.


The fonts you choose for your OpenOffice project are not always available to everyone who uses it. In the "Fonts" module, control which font Apache OpenOffice uses when the font you chose is unavailable.

Font replacement table

Apply replacement table

Select this option to activate the font replacement table. This box must be checked to add or remove fonts to the table.


Select the font in your document you wish to replace using the drop-down menu.

Replace with

Select the font to replace the original font with using the drop-down menu.

Adding fonts to the font replacement table

After you select a pair of fonts, click the green check-mark to add them to the font replacement table. To remove the pair from the table, select them and click the red X.

Once you have added a pair of fonts to the table, select when the replacement scheme will apply:

  • Always: Always replaces the original font even if it is available.
  • Screen only: Replaces the original font when the document appears on the screen but not when the document is printed.

Font settings for HTML, Basic and SQL sources

These settings control how Apache OpenOffice displays the code that is part of your document. For example, if you are creating a web document, these settings determine what font is used to display the HTML markup.


Select the font from the drop-down menu. Automatic sets the font based on your system settings.

Non-proportional fonts only

Selecting this option forces Apache OpenOffice to choose an equal-width font (such as Courier) to display code.


Select the font size your code displays in using the drop-down menu.


In the "Security" module, set security preferences for your OpenOffice documents and projects.

Security options and warnings

There may be text changes, notes, or hidden text in your document that you want to hide from others. This hidden information is retained when you print, save, send, or export your document. Set Apache OpenOffice to either warn you about hidden information, or remove it before sharing your document.

Click  Options  to open the Security options an warnings dialog.

Security options and warnings dialog

Security warnings

Check the appropriate boxes to warn you if your document has hidden information when sharing it.

Security options

  • Remove personal information on saving: Removes User Data when saving a document.
  • Recommend password protection on saving: Prompts you to set a password for a document when it is saved.
  • Ctrl-click required to follow hyperlinks: Requires the user to use ctrl-click to click through hyperlinks in a document.

Passwords for web connections

Protect and store passwords for external websites linked in OpenOffice documents with a master password.

Persistently save passwords for web connections

Selecting this option enables Apache OpenOffice to save passwords for external websites. If a master password has not been set, a dialog will prompt you to set a new one.


Click  Connections  to view the external website where the passwords are saved. You will be prompted for the master password.

  • Remove: Select a website from the list and click  Remove  to remove it from the list.
  • Remove All: Click  Remove All  to remove all websites from the list.
  • Change Password: Select a website from the list and click  Change Password  to change the password used to access that website.

Master Password

Click  Master Password  to change the master password.

Macro security

Macros from outside your document can represent a security risk. The "Macro security" dialog sets how Apache OpenOffice deals with external macros, and allows you to designate trusted sources and files from which macros can be run.

Click  Macro Security  to open the Macro Security dialog.

Macro Security Dialog

Security Level Tab

Sets whether Apache OpenOffice runs macros that are from untrusted sources or untrusted file locations. Select the appropriate level of security.

Trusted Sources Tab

  • 'Trusted certificates
    • Lists macros that have trusted certificates. Click  View  to view details of each macro. To remove a listed macro, select a macro and click  Remove .
  • Trusted file locations
    • Sets file locations where macros will run. Click  Add  to display the file browser. Navigate to the file location you want added to the list. To remove a location from the list, select the location and click  Remove .


In the "Appearance" module, create alternate color schemes for user interface elements in Apache OpenOffice. These settings do not affect the formatting of your document.

Color scheme

A scheme is any particular combination of colors used for user interface elements. Create a new scheme by changing the color of just one element, or by changing every element. Use these controls to create and save new schemes.


Select the theme you want using the drop-down menu. "OpenOffice" is the default theme. To save the color scheme you created, click  Save . A dialog prompts you to give the scheme a name. The name of the new scheme now appears in the drop-down menu where you can select it when you want it.

To delete a scheme you created, select it from the drop-down menu and click  Delete .

Custom colors

Select custom colors for each user interface element. Click  Save  to save and name the color scheme you create.

  • On: Check this box to include the interface element in the color scheme you create. If the box is unchecked, the color of the element does not change. If the element has no checkbox, the scheme automatically includes the element.
  • User interface elements: Describes the element.
  • Color setting: Select the color you want for that element using the drop-down menu.
  • Preview: Previews the color of the element.


In the "Accessibility" module, set preferences to improve user experience for users with reduced sight or other disabilities.

Miscellaneous Options

  • Support assistive technology tools: Supports assistive technology (AT) tools such as Braille devices or speech recognition devices. For more information on AT tools, please refer to the Accessibility page.
  • Use text selection cursor in read-only documents: Uses selection cursor in read-only documents.
  • Allow animated graphics: Allows animated graphics in your Writer project.
  • Allow animated text: Allows animated text in your Writer project.
  • Help tips disappear after: Set the amount of time to display Help Tips. If unselected, Help Tips remains on the screen until you click Esc.

Options for high contrast appearance

Improve readability by adjusting the high contrast settings.

  • Automatically detect high contrast mode of operating system: Forces OpenOffice into high contrast mode when the system background is dark.
  • Use automatic font color for screen display: Overrides all text color attributes set in an OpenOffice document for display only.
  • Use system colors for page previews: Enables high contrast mode for colors in page previews.


Even if not written on that language, Apache OpenOffice can use Java for some components (mainly, Base), some export filters and many extensions.

For this reason, the availability of a Java runtime environment even if not strictly needed, is highly recommended.

There are different Java systems that can be used. In addition to the one developed by Oracle also exists the open source project OpenJDK.

Java on Linux

For Linux users, Java is not a problem: almost all Linux distributions install by default OpenJDK, which works perfectly with Apache OpenOffice.

If for any reason Java is not installed on your Linux system, it is highly recommended to install it through you package manager using an official repository: a manual install of Java is not that easy. Read the documentation of your Linux distribution to know how to install a package from repository.

Java on Windows and other systems

Documentation caution.png On Windows systems, Apache OpenOffice is only available on 32 bits versions. Even if you have a 64 bit system you need to download the 32 bit version of Java in order to use it with Apache OpenOffice.

Go to this page for Java 7 or to this page for Java 6 in order to download the installer. How to install the package depends on your system, but on those pages you'll find the instructions.

Making Java work on Apache OpenOffice

It is important to note that it is not enough to install Java: you need to tell AOO to use it. On Tools → Options → OpenOffice → Java make sure to see something like this


BOTH the box for "Use a Java runtime environment" and the radio button corresponding to the chosen runtime environment must be clearly checked.

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