OpenOffice.orgs namesake suite turned 4 last month, and in a sign of just how far the open-source productivity suite has come, a commercially supported version of the software for Windows is now available.
Flexiety last month began offering a $49.95 boxed version of OpenOffice.org with support at CompUSA stores in Texas, the San Francisco Bay area and Seattle. The package includes one year of free quarterly updates and a year of unlimited online tech support. The software is also available from Flexiety at www.flexiety.com and from TigerDirect online at www.tigerdirect.com.
Support for OpenOffice.org users may help allay some concerns from organizations that are reluctant to deploy the open-source software. But although support is a nice touch, compatibility issues with Microsoft Office applications must be resolved before many sites can deploy OpenOffice.org. Im hoping OpenOffice.org 2.0, the next major release, will alleviate some of these issues.
You can get an early glimpse of OpenOffice.org 2.0 by downloading the latest developers build (1.9 m62 at press time) at www.openoffice.org.