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OpenOffice's 3.0 release temporarily closes site

Downloading for OpenOffice.org's new suite is in high demand.

If you go to OpenOffice's Web site right now, you will be greeted with this:

Apologies - our website is struggling to cope with the unprecedented demand for the new release 3.0 of OpenOffice.org. The technical teams are trying to come up with a solution.

Fortunately, however, you will also find links to download the latest version of the well-known, well-loved, and open-source OpenOffice.org suite, the alternative to the notoriously overpriced Microsoft Office.

After a lengthy development time, the company finally released its new 3.0 version of the software suite on Monday, and the download frenzies have forced the company to close all parts of its Web site to dedicate bandwidth for the downloading demand.

Apart from the fact that it's free and open source, the OfficeOffice.org suite is the only office suite that's available in all platforms including Windows, Linux, Solaris, and Mac.

Like previous versions, the OpenOffice.org 3.0 includes applications for word processing, spreadsheets, presentation, drawing, and databases. The new version's initial release offers only read-only support for Microsoft Office 2007 file formats including DOCX (Word), XLSX (Excel), and PPTX (PowerPoint), but can convert them into Office 2003 file formats.

The installer of OpenOffice.org 3.0 for Windows is only about 140MB in size, but it took me quite a long time to download due to the heavy traffic to the site. However, my colleague Seth Rosenblatt said he could get that done much faster using BitTorrent. You can also download the files from Download.com, for Windows and Mac.