StarOffice 8 is an open source software that consists of five independent programs: Star Office Writer (a powerful word processor), Impress (presentation), Calc (spreadsheet), Base (data base utility) and Draw (a drawing program).
Same as Microsoft Office suites, the software calls the necessary program to accomplish the desired duty.
The StarOffice Writer is the word processor, very similar to Microsoft Word, but includes some features such as: picture gallery for inserting in text, direct exportation as PDF, direct email format, direct insertion of hyperlinks and tables, a function navigator, undo, redo and repeat functions, documents comparison, insert data: date, time, author, notes, indexes, envelope creation, formulas, movie and sound insertion, etc., it can include spreadsheet, database, drawings, etc., creation and management of password protected documents, thesaurus replacement and more.
In accordance with World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) for HTML documents creation, XML filters. It includes a Media Player utility. Extensive Help file.
The StarOffice Calc is the spreadsheet application. Much as the Microsoft Excel program, it includes all the regular utilities and also some new features such as: open a new document as HTML, XML, formula, business card, templates, etc., wizards for creating fax, agenda, presentation, web page, etc., export a document as PDF, XHTML, XLS, CSV, etc., printer settings from the application; undo, redo and repeat capacities; documents comparison; direct insertion of hyperlinks, tables, notes, pictures, applets, sounds and movies, etc.; pictures gallery; XML filters; digital signature. It also includes an extensive Help file.
The StarOffice Base is the data base application. Similar to the Microsoft Access part of the MS Office, it includes very easy to use wizards for creating queries, tables, forms and reports. Compatible with many data base formats, and also all the facilities above mentioned (pictures and backgrounds gallery, navigator, etc.).
StarOffice Impress is the equivalent application to the Microsoft Office PowerPoint program. Some facilities are remarkable: easy transition effect, custom animation, etc. and many useful templates for helping the presentation to be created. Compatible with any animation format, it also includes the export, import, etc. facilities above mentioned.
StarOffice Draw could be considered as the equivalent to the Windows Paint facility, but including all the advantages offered by StarOffice in all the components: impor/export facilities, HTML compatible, etc. This application is the basic complement for creating web pages, interacting with the other StarOffice programs.
The complete suite adapts itself to the user desktop theme for appearing as a native application.