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On 12/11/2013 06:56 AM, Milos Sramek wrote:

a friend of mine has asked me for help. Their (small) company would like to get rid of dependency on Microsoft tools. The situation is: They have a company information system, which every now and then generates a spreadsheet table, which lands in MS Excel on some computer. For this MS Office ole automation is used. He has asked me, if it is somehow possible to redirect this to LibreOffice. Vendor if the information system has refused to support something like that (a small company fully dependent on MS).

Is this somehow possible? Does anybody have experience with it?



I have a few of questions:

What is the backend of the information system? There almost always is a database present. Maybe it could configured to save the data in another format - most likely csv/tsv. If you are very lucky it may support export to ods.

What Excel format are they using? If xls (most likely), directly importing into Calc maybe the easiest solution. If the xlsx, it will probably work but there are reports that xlsx files are more problematic.

How complex is the spreadsheet? If it is basically a data with at most a few formulas and no outside links or internal links between sheets then importing into Calc will be much less troublesome. I doubt this is true.

Are there any macros in the Excel spreadsheet? Though I doubt any are present, this would be one area that would make using Calc very difficult.

Thinking about your question, I would install LO and try opening several of the spreadsheets and see if problems occur. Calc does a very good job of opening MSO formats.

Jay Lozier

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