How to Install LibreOffice on Debian 12, 11 or 10

LibreOffice Suite leads the open-source office software market, offering tools for tasks ranging from word processing to data management.

Key Features of LibreOffice Suite:

  • Unmatched Compatibility: LibreOffice supports numerous document formats, including Microsoft Office formats. Users can easily share, edit, and collaborate on files across different platforms.
  • Adaptability: With a wide range of supported extensions, LibreOffice allows users to customize the software to meet their needs, enhancing its functionality.
  • Comprehensive Toolset: The suite includes:
    • Writer: A powerful word processor.
    • Calc: A spreadsheet application for data analysis and organization.
    • Impress: A tool for creating engaging presentations.
    • Draw: An application for crafting detailed graphics and diagrams.
    • Base: A robust database management tool.
    • Math: An application for creating and editing mathematical formulas.

Now, in the central part of the article, we will demonstrate two methods of installing LibreOffice using the apt or flatpak package managers.

Select Method to Install LibreOffice via Terminal Commands

Method 1: Install LibreOffice via APT Default Repository

Update Debian Linux Before LibreOffice Installation

Before installing any new software, it’s a best practice to update the existing packages on your Debian system. This ensures compatibility and smooth operation.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

Install LibreOffice via standard APT Commands

After updating the system, you can install the LibreOffice suite using the APT package manager.

sudo apt install libreoffice

Optional: Enable LibreOffice Backports on Debian

For those using older Debian distributions, such as Buster, there’s an option to enable backports. This allows users to access more recent versions of the LibreOffice suite.

Ensure the installation of all necessary packages:

sudo apt install lsb-release

Then, proceed to install the backported version of LibreOffice:

sudo apt install -t $(lsb_release -cs)-backports libreoffice

Note: If backports aren’t enabled on your system, refer to our comprehensive guide on enabling backports or experimental repositories for all Debian Linux distributions.

Method 2: Install LibreOffice via Flatpak and Flathub

For users seeking the latest versions of LibreOffice, the default repositories might not suffice. While one could attempt APT pinning for unstable packages, this approach has risks. Given LibreOffice’s extensive package dependencies, using a third-party package manager like Flatpak becomes a more reliable choice.

Introduction to Flatpak and Flathub on Debian For Software such as LibreOffice

Flatpak is a software utility that offers a sandbox environment where users can run applications in isolation from the rest of the system. Flathub, on the other hand, is a repository for Flatpak apps. This combination allows Debian users to access and install the latest software versions, including LibreOffice, without waiting for the official Debian repositories to catch up.

Enable Flathub for LibreOffice

To access the vast collection of applications on Flathub, you first need to add the Flathub repository.

sudo flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

Note: If Flatpak isn’t installed on your system, the above command won’t function. For a step-by-step guide, visit how to install Flatpak on Debian Linux.

Install LibreOffice via Flatpak Command

With Flathub enabled, you can now install LibreOffice using Flatpak.

flatpak install flathub org.libreoffice.LibreOffice -y

Launching LibreOffice Suite

After successfully installing LibreOffice on your Debian system, you can open and use the suite in multiple ways. You can choose to use the terminal or prefer a graphical approach.

Method 1: Launch LibreOffice from the Terminal

Access your terminal application as you typically would on your Debian system, then open LibreOffice with inputting the following command:

libreoffice

However, if you’ve installed LibreOffice using Flatpak, the command differs slightly:

flatpak run org.libreoffice.LibreOffice

Method 2: Launch LibreOffice from the Application Icon

Navigate to your application menu or dashboard and search “LibreOffice.” Once you locate the LibreOffice icon, click on it. This action will launch the LibreOffice suite, and from there, you can select the specific application (like Writer, Calc, or Impress) you wish to use.

Additional Commands for LibreOffice

Update LibreOffice

APT Update Command for LibreOffice

Updating it if you’ve installed LibreOffice using the APT package manager is straightforward. Regularly updating ensures you have the latest features and security patches.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade libreoffice

Flatpak Update Command for LibreOffice

The update process is slightly different but equally simple for those who’ve opted for the Flatpak installation.

flatpak update org.libreoffice.LibreOffice

Remove (Uninstalling) LibreOffice on Debian

There might come a time when you need to uninstall LibreOffice, either to free up space or to resolve specific issues. Depending on your installation method, the removal process varies.

APT Remove Command for LibreOffice

If you’ve installed LibreOffice through the APT package manager on Debian, you can uninstall it using the following command:

sudo apt remove libreoffice

Flatpak Remove Command for LibreOffice

For users who’ve installed the Flatpak version of LibreOffice, the uninstallation command is:

flatpak uninstall org.libreoffice.LibreOffice -y

Conclusion

This guide provided detailed steps for installing and managing the LibreOffice Suite on Debian versions 12, 11, and 10, using either the APT or Flatpak method. Keeping the suite updated is crucial for optimal performance, access to the latest features, and the most recent security patches.

Useful Links

Here are some valuable links related to using LibreOffice:

  • LibreOffice GitHub Repository: Visit the official LibreOffice GitHub repository to access the source code, report issues, and contribute to the development.
  • LibreOffice Official Website: Explore the official LibreOffice website for an overview of features, the latest news, and download options.
  • LibreOffice Wiki: The LibreOffice wiki provides detailed information on the project, including development and community contributions.
  • LibreOffice Documentation: Access comprehensive documentation to guide you through using LibreOffice effectively.
  • LibreOffice FAQ: Browse the frequently asked questions to find answers to common queries and issues.
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