LibreOffice vs. Microsoft Excel

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
LibreOffice
Score 8.9 out of 10
N/A
LibreOffice is a free and open-source Office Suite from The Document Foundation, presented as the successor to OpenOffice.org. The suite includes Writer (word processing), Calc (spreadsheets), Impress (presentations), Draw (vector graphics and flowcharts), Base (databases), and Math (formula editing).
$0
free and open source under the Mozilla Public License v2.0
Microsoft Excel
Score 8.9 out of 10
N/A
Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet application available as part of Microsoft 365 (Office 365), or standalone, in cloud-based and on-premise editions.
$6.99
per month
Pricing
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
Excel with Microsoft 365
$6.99
per month
Excel for 1 PC or Mac
$139.99
perpetual license
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Free Trial
NoYes
Free/Freemium Version
YesYes
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Considered Both Products
LibreOffice

No answer on this topic

Microsoft Excel
Chose Microsoft Excel
I personally like Excel better than the other two programs I have listed. They are very close to excel but I know where everything is and what all the symbols are in excel where the other ones have some different nuances that take a little bit more time or that I have to …
Top Pros
Top Cons
Best Alternatives
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Small Businesses
Google Workspace
Google Workspace
Score 9.1 out of 10
Google Sheets
Google Sheets
Score 8.5 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Google Workspace
Google Workspace
Score 9.1 out of 10
Google Sheets
Google Sheets
Score 8.5 out of 10
Enterprises
Microsoft 365 Business Premium
Microsoft 365 Business Premium
Score 8.9 out of 10
Google Sheets
Google Sheets
Score 8.5 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Likelihood to Recommend
9.9
(29 ratings)
9.5
(57 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
9.0
(1 ratings)
9.9
(5 ratings)
Usability
6.1
(2 ratings)
10.0
(2 ratings)
Availability
10.0
(1 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Performance
6.0
(1 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Support Rating
7.3
(6 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Implementation Rating
9.0
(1 ratings)
8.0
(1 ratings)
Configurability
-
(0 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Ease of integration
5.0
(1 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Product Scalability
7.0
(1 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Vendor post-sale
-
(0 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Vendor pre-sale
-
(0 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
User Testimonials
LibreOfficeMicrosoft Excel
Likelihood to Recommend
The Document Foundation
LibreOffice is a good alternative to MS Office. I like it better than Google Docs. It's compatible with MS Office applications. However, many of the features or functions are difficult to find even when utilizing the help menu. The website isn't too helpful either. My greatest disappointment is that I paid for the premium version a year ago but never received the features that were supposed to be available with a premium subscription. The upper right-hand corner of the app shows the subscription type and date of expiration of the subscription. I have premium yet every time I try to access a premium feature it requests me to pay. I have contacted LibreOffice several times over the year and they never responded or provided a refund. I can only recommend the free version because even with a premium subscription, which mine is supposed to expire on 10/22/21 (the date of this review is 08/04/21), I have yet to be able to utilize the premium features I paid for last year. I would not use this as my primary app for Word processing which is where I am experiencing the majority of the blocked features issues. Even with a paid premium subscription, I am unable to create labels. It's asking me to pay again. I think LibreOffice has greater potential but a user must get the features they paid for. I hesitate to call the company a scam but I can say I have contacted LibreOffice numerous times over the past year about the ongoing issues and have not received a response at least once. Along with the features and subscriptions issues that needed to be addressed, another area of improvement is their website. It is very difficult to locate information. Even when using the search field the instructions often do not match the app. I am not sure how often they update their online guides but I have never found it to be helpful. I have also found it very difficult to impossible to download templates. I usually get weird links with garbled codes and no template when trying to download a template. I'm not sure if it's an issue with their site or not but since they don't respond to inquiries I cannot determine a possible cause for the problem.
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Microsoft
For tasks like financial analysis, budgeting, forecasting, and data visualization, I frequently use Microsoft Excel. I can develop financial models, use pivot tables to examine enormous datasets, and produce eye-catching visualizations thanks to its comprehensive features. I have, however, also come across circumstances in which Excel isn't the best tool.Excel falls short of alternatives like Google Sheets when I need to collaborate with my team in real-time. I favor employing robust database management systems or data analysis tools like SQL, Python, or R for managing very big data sets or sophisticated calculations. I use specialized tools like SPSS, SAS, or programming languages for better outcomes when complex statistical analysis or machine learning are necessary. And finally, for formatting elaborate reports, In conclusion, even though I consider Excel to be a great tool for many finance jobs, there are some limits in collaborating, processing big amounts of data, performing complex analysis, and creating documents that I take into account when choosing the best tool for the job.
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Pros
The Document Foundation
  • The text word processing (Writer) has come a long way and, if you are able to install your corporate fonts, there is basically nothing LibreOffice cannot handle. It works very well with document reviews and comments, and it can save in a variety of formats, making it compatible with the likes of Microsoft Word or Google Docs.
  • The spreadsheet software (Calc) can also handle most of the common tasks you may need, link various sheets, and perform some automated functions quite well. It is, I must say, somewhat less complete than the word processing side (Writer).
  • The Draw program allows you to do organizational charts and basic publications very well. It was a deficit in the past, but not anymore.
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Microsoft
  • It is very good at embedded formulas and tying cells to one another
  • It allows me to compare deals terms on a side-by-side basis and talk my clients through it easily.
  • It is very helpful as well in terms of allowing me to filter/sort results in many different ways depending on what specific information I am most interested in prioritizing.
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Cons
The Document Foundation
  • Name brand office suites vendors such as Microsoft and Google have online portals where documents can be saved and shared for automation/integration. LibreOffice would do well to expand into this space.
  • Memory handling in large spreadsheets (i.e., 60k rows or more) seems a bit quirky on my Macbook Air. It might just be a memory issues, but scrolling with the trackpad behaves strangely (i.e., cell selection jumps around unexpectedly).
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Microsoft
  • Counting conditionally formatted cells (e.g., you have 5 green cells, 10 red ones, and 3 orange ones in a row).
  • Merging cells in a table; I have to remove the table first and then re-add the table to merge cells together.
  • Offering more preset colour categories for formatting graphs.
  • Built-in functions to run ANOVAs, Multiple Linear Regression, Factor Analysis, etc.
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Likelihood to Renew
The Document Foundation
We use it consistently and have a lot of documents in the OpenDocument format so it will be necessary to use LibreOffice or a compatible product such as Openoffice in the future to be able to open these files. Because the license fee for Libreoffice is zero it is not very costly to keep using it - the costs are mostly for keeping it installed on the office PCs and regularly updated, and solving employee issues with the user support.
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Microsoft
It comes with MS Office. Unless we stop using PCs or Microsoft Office, it's highly unlikely, even imperceivable to not continue to use Excel. It would be nice to see more Excel functions used, though, beside basic tables and calculations.
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Usability
The Document Foundation
Most people can quickly start using Writer or Calc or Impress for basic tasks even if they see Libreoffice for the first time, because the interface is similar to older (97-2003) MS Office or other software. Some features are less intuitive than in recent MS Office and some power users of MS Office need to re-learn some things before being proficient in Libreoffice.
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Microsoft
Microsoft excel stands out in its User Interface as compared to any other software which offers same functionality. It can be used by a beginner as well as the expert in the same field. It is having many features as we dig deep in it like advance functions, dynamic arrays, pivot, VBA and Macros.
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Reliability and Availability
The Document Foundation
Libreoffice is a desktop app not requiring any server part so it is always available when the PC is working normally. Installing it on another machine if one PC fails is very quick and easy. This is a non-issue.
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Microsoft
I have rarely, if ever, had issues with its availability.
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Performance
The Document Foundation
For big/imported tables or text documents with images loaded from the internet it is sometimes getting very slow, RAM and CPU intensive, and sometimes even hangs due to some memory leaks or other bugs. This is a long-term problem and is still not resolved perfectly.
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Microsoft
Again it does what I need it to do with little to no issues.
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Support Rating
The Document Foundation
Support is not officially offered. However, you can find answers to any usage questions or trouble-shooting online easily, typically starting with a Google search. (I believe that all forums / tips for OpenOffice apply equally to LibreOffice, and vice versa.) While Microsoft Office, for example, officially includes support, I find that typically you end up going to a Google search in any case. So, this is not really a downside. However, in all these cases, you end up doing a lot of figuring things out for yourself.
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Microsoft
I have not had to use it often, but it is good.
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Implementation Rating
The Document Foundation
Generally easy to perform, issues are how to ensure regular automatic updates on Mac OS X. Fortunatly we have only a few machines with OS X run by management and we can do these updates manually occasionally. Windows updates are quite easy with the support of third party software such as Ninite or Chocolatey, and Linux updates are super-easy thanks to the package manager (apt-get).
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Microsoft
No answers on this topic
Alternatives Considered
The Document Foundation
As noted previously, LibreOffice blows Google Docs (G Suite) out of the water in terms of singular application quality, and comes close but misses the mark as a drop-in replacement to Microsoft Office. We currently are evaluating the latest release of LibreOffice to see if we can replace Microsoft Office with it entirely as we've had more time to fill in the holes that were left when losing out on Outlook and OneNote and all of the integrations that come with Microsoft Office.
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Microsoft
We utilize Tableau and Alteryx in addition to Excel. We use Excel since we have a data dump that could be utilized in feeding for these two solutions. We select Excel for some manual work then plug the data into the other two tools for further analysis around text analytics like word clouds in Tableau, or text mining in Alteryx. Excel is an input data source that we use in conjunction with these two.
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Contract Terms and Pricing Model
The Document Foundation
No answers on this topic
Microsoft
N/A I was not involved in this process.
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Scalability
The Document Foundation
With more users using it in the company there are more cases when a simultaneous editing of the same document is needed and this feature is lacking in Libreoffice even though the files concerned are shared and synced by some solution (we use ownCloud). Google Docs or MS Office365 via Sharepoint/Onedrive offer a better function for this.
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Microsoft
It integrates well with all cross functional teams
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Return on Investment
The Document Foundation
  • A lot of ROI because their license price, 100% of return.
  • Sometimes we lose time finding how to do things, lowering a little bit of productivity.
  • We need to spend on training for employees because most people only know how to use Microsoft Office
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Microsoft
  • Excel has positively impacted the business as it has increased our efficiency.
  • It also saves us the time that we would have spent on making the calculations that it does for us.
  • Since it works on all devices and is compatible with both Windows and Mac, we do not have to invest in any other alternative.
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