IBM Symphony Openoffice

January 30, 2012 by staff 

IBM Symphony Openoffice, IBM’s putting its weight behind an Oracle-backed OpenOffice push rather than follow Google, Red Hat and others on an independent effort.

The latest version of IBM’s Symphony collaboration suite, version 3.0.1, will likely be the last based on the computing and services giant’s fork of the OpenOffice code base.

IBM is instead putting its “energy” into the Apache OpenOffice project, having contributed the Symphony code base to the Apache Software Foundation.

Ed Brill, director of messaging and collaboration for Lotus software, has blogged here: “We expect to distribute an ‘IBM edition’ of Apache OpenOffice in the future.”

The decision sees IBM lining up against Google, Ubuntu-shop Canonical Red Hat, Novell and others who’ve thrown their hats in with The Document Foundation.

The Foundation is home to another OpenOffice fork called LibreOffice, and both the fork and Foundation were created by Google, Canonical, Red Hat and Novell in 2010 following a disagreement with newbie OpenOffice owner Oracle over the project’s future and independence.

Oracle had inherited OpenOffice through its Sun Microsystems acquisition, a deal that saw Oracle also gain Sun’s status as the project’s largest single contributor and member.

OpenOfficers wanted to use the hiatus as an opportunity to re-invent OpenOffice as a vendor-independent and neutral effort.

Oracle, however, refused to let go and instead the members split, with Oracle only finally letting go in June 2011 by agreeing to contribute OpenOffice to ASF. Oracle, though, continues to own the OpenOffice trademark, and say who’s allowed to use it.

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