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StarOffice 8 is a solid MS Office competitor

Sun has made ODF as the default file format of StarOffice 8. Our friends at CNet are definitely excited about Sun Microsystems StarOffice 8 which they call as a solid productivity suite that costs a fraction of the price of its main competitor, Microsoft Office 2003.

StarOffice 8 has new mail-merge and database wizards, better import and export filters for Microsoft Office files, and an Adobe PDF-export tool that now supports hyperlinks, tables of contents, and other essentials. StarOffice 8 lacks a contacts manager, an e-mail program, and a photo editor.

And while StarOffice runs on a variety of operating systems, including Linux, Solaris, and Windows, it eschews Macintosh--surprising, given the suite's cross-platform philosophy. But the package price of $100 on CD or $70 via download makes StarOffice 8 a good buy for both small and large businesses.

Difference between Sun StarOffice 8 and OpenOffice 2

StarOffice Enterprise users get the Macro Migration and Document Analysis wizards, which OpenOffice lacks. And while StarOffice provides 60 days of free support, OpenOffice fans must seek help from fellow users. Still, cost-conscious home users may find it hard to beat the free OpenOffice 2.