Posts Tagged 'AbiWord'

FreeFile Review – Document.Editor

Document.Editor is a word processing program. It is an open source project which gives a very good first impression, but with closer inspection, it becomes clear that this project is far from complete. It is for Windows only.

Installation is rather unusual; an .application file is downloaded and when clicked it downloads the program and installs it (I would prefer a simple .exe). Installation is otherwise quick and painless. The program’s interface is an exceptionally well done version of Microsoft’s ribbon interface. Here’s a screenshot. It has Spell Check, Text-to-Speech, and Definitions (Bing look up). Tabs allow opening multiple documents. Unfortunately, the positive impression ended there.

The list of negatives is long. The program can open and save only the most basic formats (.txt .rtf .xdoc). Page layout functions are non existent and printing is very basic. Those two shortcomings make Document.Editor unusable for most users. The program is not stable – it crashed after about 30 minutes of inactivity and it does not remember its window size and location after being minimized to the task bar. The Translation button seems to be non functioning. Most of the links in the program are dead (WTF?). User options are limited.

– – – – The Bottom Line – – – –

I cannot recommend Document.Editor – it is simply too incomplete at this time. I hope this project continues to improve, as I see potential in it. For a better free word processor, see my review of AbiWord.
Document.Editor can be downloaded HERE.

Read more FreeFile Reviews at DanKostecki.com

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FreeFile Review – AbiWord

Originally, this review was to be titled “WordPad – The Forgotten Word Processor”, however, it soon became clear that WordPad was forgotten for very good reasons. Support for Word’s .doc format was removed from WordPad when Windows Vista debuted. Little was expected and even less was delivered by WordPad. It may be a reasonable application if your needs begin and end with .rtf (rich text format), but better solutions exist.

Next up is AbiWord which has long been considered the best of the free word processor applications. It is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. Installation was problem free. A few add-ons can be selected during the install, however, the search and translation options merely place internet shortcuts on the ‘Tools’ menu – skip those. The interface is pleasant and relatively uncluttered. AbiWord will open, edit and save to a long list of formats, including .doc and .html. Although, AbiWord is not as full featured as Word, it has spell check, mail merge and supports the embedding of graphics and tables. During my short test, I found no issues opening, editing and saving .doc documents.

Only one negative surfaced. I found a bug (or, is it a feature?). While in the Print layout, the horizontal ruler on top does not line up with the page. It does not affect the page layout, but, I found it annoying.

– – The Bottom Line – –

AbiWord is a capable word processor that should meet most people’s needs. If you want more, consider Libre Office which was reviewed here 3 months ago.

Download AbiWord HERE

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