At work, I sometimes have to edit MS Word documents (other members of the team use Word). Normally LibreOffice does the job pretty well, but I have come across occasional issues with tracked changes and big tables/graphs when the document is reopened in Word (mostly when using Microsoft’s OOXML formats). As a result, when working on Word documents for work that I need to share back, I’ve tended to use Word 2007 running in a virtual (VirtualBox) Windows XP environment.
That’s all fine (and of course, it works great) but there is still the hassle of firing up the virtual machine and the memory hit (I’m often using quite large datasets in R on Linux simultaneously and losing some memory to Windows can have a noticeable effect). I’m also squeamish about letting Windows XP access my working directory for the files on Linux directly, so I tend to have to copy them to a special folder that I share with the virtualised Windows XP.
I was setting up a new laptop today and the above issues, together with the pain of either doing a Windows XP install or the (lesser) pain of copying the virtual disk from my other machine, persuaded me to think about alternatives. I tried Wine for runningn MS Office back in the day (I guess at that point it was Office XP or maybe 2003) with limited success, but I checked the Wine App database and found that reasonable success had been had with Word 2007.
Following the specific (slightly outdated) Fedora guidance provided by Fclose I was soon up and running. Word 2007 seems to work flawlessly so far, so maybe I’ll have no more need for even a virtualised Windows instance at work.
Thank you, Wine team.