This month, LibreOffice 6.2 rolled out to users of the popular open source productivity suite. Plenty of new features have been added, but perhaps the most curious change is the introduction of a user interface that looks like the Ribbon in Microsoft Office.

Of course, LibreOffice copying Microsoft Office is hardly a new thing. Since its days as OpenOffice, the software has mirrored Microsoft’s suite, albeit with less panache. That is not a complaint. Microsoft Office is hugely popular, so LibreOffice merely gives users what they like, just for free.

The latest Ribbon-like UI addition is called Notebookbar on LibreOffice. Some users may have already seen this as it has been in development preview since 2017.

It is worth noting the new interface is not available by default, so if you don’t like it don’t use it. While adding the new element, LibreOffice 6.2 also adds the Groupedbar Compact interface. To see the new additions, head to Select View > User Interface on Writer, Impress, Draw, of Calc.

LibreOffice is widely considered to be the best alternative to Microsoft’s Office suite. It is a service that those who have been around long enough will remember was once called OpenOffice (albeit forked). The suite is free and open sourced, and while more basic than Microsoft Office, it has many of the same features.

Changes

Below is the full changelog for LibreOffice 6.2:

  • Writer: spreadsheet data can be copied and pasted natively in Writer (Word) now. The new functionality allows you to paste directly into tables (opposed to creating a new table whenever you paste spreadsheet data as was the case in previous versions).
  • Writer: documents with many tracked changes don’t suffer from major performance issues anymore thanks to the ability to hide tracked changes.
  • Calc: Support for signature lines.
  • Support for custom formulas for data validation.
  • Calc: Regression tool supports multivariate regression analysis.
  • Calc: Regex support to match text against a regular expression and optionally replace.
  • Core: Sign signature lines with an image of your handwritten signature.
  • Core: Source Serif Pro font added and Liberation font updated.
  • Filters: EMF+ vector image import support improved (used in Microsoft Office formats)
  • Filters: OOXML, PPTX import/export, PPT import/export filter improvements.
  • Personalization: Personalization dialog is “much faster, efficient and stable”.
  • Performance: improvements across the board, e.g. latency reduction, unnecessary animations have been removed.