Linux software maker SuSE announced Tuesday the release of Linux Office Desktop, software that allows Linux PCs to run Microsoft Office. The software reworks the application programming interfaces (APIs) behind Office 97 and Office 2000 to allow the applications to run in the open-source operating system.
Holger Dyroff, North American sales director for SuSE, said the company still advocates using Sun Microsystems' open-source StarOffice office suite, but Linux Office Desktop provides a safety net for companies transitioning to open-source software. "You don't want to change the (operating system) and the office application at the same time--nobody wants to absorb that level of risk," he said. "This lets you phase things in." Dyroff said SuSE is working on further applications that would provide Linux accessibility for popular applications from Adobe Systems and Macromedia.