LibreOffice 3.4: Release Notes

From The Document Foundation Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

About this page

This is an in-progress scratch-pad of notes to build release notes from as and when we release.

This page is only for LibreOffice specific features; though we should collect details on Oracle's contribution separately too.

What does a good feature look like here:

  • It has a description, and a way for a busy reviewer, to find and play with the feature. Target someone who is very busy, and knows little-to-nothing about the product. So if a user interface element is key to the feature, be very explicit about where it is eg. Menu ▸ Format ▸ Character ▸ Position[tab] ▸ '90 degrees' paths to the elements you changed. Of course, you know your feature is important, and that everyone should care about the "Extensible AutoShapes Properties dialog" - but often the guys taking the screenshots and writing the notes do not.
  • It credits the main authors who did the work - just add them in brackets after the feature, where possible.
  • If the feature can be shown off with a sample / test file - particularly for new import-able features, it would be wonderful to have a link to / up-load of a test file that we can use to show that feature off to best effect. That really helps us to make good screenshots to show off the features, and allows reviewers to do their testing.

Thanks in advance for your help filling this out !


  • New gradient / drop-shadow to highlight Writer pages, with configurable colors in the options (Tools ▸ Options ▸ Appearance ▸ Shadows). To see simply start Writer, and admire the prettier page / drop shadow (Sébastien Le Ray)
  • Support Color and line styles for the columns and footnote separator lines. This is improving the compatibility of LibreOffice with ODF (Cédric Bosdonnat).
  • Add Greek Characters mode for bullets and numbering (Pantelis Koukousoulas)
  • The graphite smart font rendering support, has been completely rewritten to use a new faster graphite engine and is now more stable and at least 10 times faster. No changes are needed to existing fonts or documents. (Keith Stribley, Martin Hosken, SIL International)


  • Redesigned Move/Copy Sheet dialog (Edit ▸ Sheet ▸ Move/Copy) to improve its ergonomics. (Joost Eekhoorn, Christoph Noack)
  • Support for autofilter per sheet: It is now possible to set autofilter per sheet without manually creating named database ranges prior to setting autofilter. Previously Calc only supported one autofilter per document, which caused the previous autofilter to disappear when setting another one even on a different sheet unless a named database range was created beforehand. (Markus Mohrhard)
  • Re-work of the drawing layer, to improve precision on re-positioning and re-sizing of drawing objects. (Caolán McNamara, Red Hat, Inc.)
  • Massive re-work of external reference handling: External reference handling code has been significantly re-worked in order to fix a large number of defects in formula calculations involving external references, and to boost data caching performance especially when referencing large data ranges. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • Named ranges in sheet-local scope: Previously, Calc only supported named ranges in global scope, that is, all named ranges were made available for the entire document regardless of the current sheet. In 3.4 Calc now supports named ranges that are local to a sheet. The named range dialog (Insert ▸ Names ▸ Define) has been modified to reflect this change. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • Multiple subtotals on a single sheet: It is now possible to define more than one subtotal range in a single sheet via Data ▸ Subtotals. Previously, setting a second subtotal range removed the first one if they were on the same sheet. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • Preserve OLE links to other Excel documents when importing an Excel document. OLE links get converted to external references upon import. Previously, Calc ignored OLE links and cells containing OLE links resulted in error upon import. (Kohei Yoshida)

Pivot Table (formerly DataPilot)

  • Support for unlimited number of fields: Previously Pivot Table only supported up to 8 column/row/data fields and up to 10 page fields. 3.4 has lifted this restriction to allow unlimited number of fields in each field type. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • Named range as data source: With 3.4 it is now possible to use a named range as the data source for Pivot Table. This allows, for example, addition of new rows to the data source and update of the Pivot Table to reflect the new data, without manually changing the data source range in the Pivot Table dialog. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • Re-work of the internals: The internal implementation of Pivot Table has been significantly re-worked in order to fix several regressions especially with regard to refreshing of Pivot Tables. (Kohei Yoshida)

Impress / Draw

  • Improve HTML export with an image thumbnail gallery of the slides on the contents page (Julien Nabet, Michael Meeks)
HTML Presentation with an image thumbnail gallery exported by Impress


  • Re-write flat ODF import and export file filters from Java to C++ giving a huge speed increase. Try saving your writer document as a ".fodt" file (Peter Jentsch)
  • Substantially re-work legacy StarOffice (pre 2000) binary file format filters, removing all export code: the filters are now smaller and read-only, this also removes clutter from the 'Save As' dialog (Pierre-André Jacquod)

Core changes


  • Initial support for Unity and global menu support (Alberto Ruiz for Canonical Ltd.)


  • Internationalized font previews: In the drop-down font selector, fonts which are tuned for use with a specific script, e.g. Arabic, Hebrew, Malayalam, etc. now show an additional preview of some sample text in the target script. See before and after screenshots. (Caolán McNamara, Red Hat, Inc.)
  • Natural Sorting: Menus list their entries in a natural sort order. e.g. "Heading 10" now appears directly after "Heading 9" in the list instead of directly after "Heading 1". See before and after screenshots. (Sébastien Le Ray) - this one apparently didn't make it into the release
  • Autocorrect: Typing "http:" at the start of a sentence no longer auto-capitalizes. Such URLs are now excluded from being auto-capitalized. (Sébastien Le Ray)
  • Text Rendering: Linux text-rendering improvements. Text is now drawn via Cairo with the same subpixeling options as other Cairo-using apps. The outcome is that text in LibreOffice is rendered the same as the rest of your desktop. See sample screenshot when desktop-wide subpixeling is enabled. (Caolán McNamara, Red Hat, Inc.)
  • Adapt to Linux mouse pointer themes more pleasantly (Kurosawa Takeshi)
  • Improve gtk+ theme integration, making LibreOffice look more native. Fix menu separators, Alt key issues, Toggle buttons, and many widget rendering details. See Comparison(Lucas Baudin)
  • Find toolbar now behaves much more like in applications like Firefox, or Evolution - is hidden by default, shows when the user presses Ctrl+f at the bottom of the document, and is wider, so more text fits there, see the detailed description and a screenshot. For the Search and Replace dialog, Ctrl+Alt+f is used. (Jan Holesovsky)
  • Separate borders width and style for Writer, Calc and Impress (Cédric Bosdonnat)
  • Added new 3D border types to increase compatibility with loads of file formats, including ODF. (Cédric Bosdonnat)
  • Color Charts: Adding and Removing color charts is now possible from Tools ▸ Options ▸ Charts ▸ Default Colors (Rob Snelders)
  • Rotate through case changes (Press ⇧ Shift+F3): fix for bug tdf#32559 (Bálint Dózsa)


  • Smoother startup on Linux: we now show our splash screen before starting to read all the application's data, giving a faster time to splash and cleaner code (Michael Meeks).
  • Remove inefficient, and un-necessary 'BmpColorMode' approach to accessibility theming. Reduce theme sizes and duplication by isolating high contrast icons in their own theme (Chris 'mordocai' Carpenter, Sebastian Spaeth)
  • Remove 150 duplicated redundant 'missing icon' icons to reduce bloat (Joachim Trémouroux, Andrew C. E. Dent)
  • Move seldom used text encoding conversions into a separate library, saving 1Mb or so of RAM (Jan Holesovsky, Michael Meeks)
  • Linux fontconfig leak: Fixed a font-related leak, saving up to 800k or so of RAM, depending on the amount of fonts installed (Caolán McNamara, Red Hat, Inc.)
  • Shrink Windows installer download by more than 30Mb using better compression schemes (Kálmán „KAMI” Szalai)
  • Remove 624 localized palette files and have them localized run-time (Andras Timar)
  • Remove compatibility support layer for old Windows 9x non-unicode Win32 APIs (Jesús Corrius)


  • When the document is encrypted with a password, you can now change the password while the document is open, from File ▸ Properties ▸ General ▸ Change Password. The button is enabled only when the document is encrypted with a password. (Kohei Yoshida)
  • LO-3.4 can be installed in parallel with LO-3.3 on Linux. Note that the user configuration is shared and both versions cannot be started at the same time.

Code cleanups

  • Remove stlport dependency across the code (Fridrich Strba)
  • Removal of numerous DECLARE_LIST in favor of STL and boost ptr_container. (Joseph Powers, Rafael Dominguez)
  • Many thousands of lines of German comments, translated to English (Christina Roßmanith, Albert Thuswaldner, Martin Kepplinger ...)
  • Thousand of incorrectly 'executable' files fixed (Francisco Saito)
  • More than 5.000 lines of dead code removed [Writer/Calc/Impress] (Kayo Hamid, Takeshi Abe)
  • Use of SAL_N_ELEMENTS [Writer/Calc/Impress/Base] (Kayo Hamid)
  • Cppcheck warnings fixes (Kayo Hamid)


  • Data Pilot is now named Pivot Table.
  • Add Beembe (beq), Bekwel(bkw), Kituba (mkw), Lari (ldi), Mbochi (mdw), Teke-Ibali (tek), Teke-Tyee (tyx), and Vili (vif) languages (Republic of Congo). Hunspell spell checker dictionaries in these languages are now useable in LibreOffice.* (Andras Timar)
  • Add Portuguese (Angola) locale data (pt_AO).* (Andras Timar)
  • Updated German spell check dictionaries, hyphenation and thesaurus and Occitan spell check dictionary

* These are not user interface (UI) localizations. Since LibreOffice 3.4.0 it has been possible to create documents in these languages, i.e. these can be selected from the language dropdrown box.

Most Annoying Bugs

The following annoying bugs were not fixed in time and will be addressed in the regular bug fix releases:

  • Cannot restore deleted text with change tracking (tdf#37584) fixed in 3.4.1
  • Lost formatting with XLS export (tdf#37622) fixed in 3.4.1
  • MS Office 2010 complains about MS Office 2003/XP documents created by LibreOffice 3.4 (tdf#37516) fixed in 3.4.1
  • PPTX files created by LibreOffice can't be opened by MS Office Web Apps; PPT files created by LibreOffice can't be opened by MS PowerPoint Viewer 2010 but they can be opened by MS Office (tdf#32709) fixed in 3.6.4
  • MS OFFICE documents recovery fails after crash (tdf#34805) fixed in 3.4.3
  • )All radio buttons are selected in forms; broken property ids (tdf#33557, tdf#75364 and tdf#40381) fixed in 4.2.6 and 4.3
  • CRASH closing document with footnotes (tdf#39510) fixed in 3.4.3

See the complete list here.