"Upgraded" shouldn't mean "broken"
March 18, 2011 12:03 PM   Subscribe

Are there any other free alternatives to Open Office 3.3 Base? I made the mistake of upgrading and now Base is completely unstable.

It crashes when making new table entries, extremely often. Often is 20+ times in the past 4 hours. I need to finish the project and since I upgraded OO to 3.3 it is virtually impossible to get work done. Are there any other free or cheap database programs like Open Office?
posted by fuq to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You could give LibreOffice a shot. It's possible it doesn't have the same bug.
posted by demiurge at 12:06 PM on March 18, 2011

LibreOffice is being touted as a non-sucky replacement, and is based on an OO fork.
posted by holgate at 12:07 PM on March 18, 2011

This may be overkill for what you want, but PostgreSQL is free and you can get a base-like frontend called pgAdmin.

This system is a lot beefier/more serious than openoffice base, and I don't think there's a way to make nice, discrete database files like you get with base. On the other hand, the seriousness of it means that it's much, much less flaky and very much more powerful as a database system.

Alternately, it seems that you can redownload 3.2.1 here, which you might prefer until they've fixed 3.3.

Finally, have you tried just reinstalling 3.3? There might have been something that went wrong during the installation for some reason.
posted by Dreadnought at 9:13 PM on March 18, 2011

Response by poster: forum searching and tests seems to indicate that this is a problem inherent in the OO/Libreoffice database file format.
posted by fuq at 9:28 AM on March 19, 2011

Oo and LO are essentially garbage. There is no good free alternative to Access that I am aware of; your best option might be a database server like PostgreSQL (as Dreadnought suggests) or the lighter-weight alternative, SQLite. SQLite has the advantage that it produces a single file which you can treat as a normal document. Unfortunately, there is no Access-like form designer for the format, as far as I'm aware.

Now, why the "office replacement" teams haven't ditched their execrable formats and moved to SQLite is an entirely different question.
posted by sonic meat machine at 11:01 AM on March 19, 2011

If it's a format FUBAR, then yeah, you need a replacement. PostgreSQL is probably overkill; SQLite less so, and you might be able to wangle something out of System.Data.SQLite.
posted by holgate at 4:13 PM on March 19, 2011

Response by poster: FYI future askers, I tried changing my database into an external, non-embedded database as per this advise (did you know that .odb files are actually a .zip file and the data is compressed on the fly?) and that didn't solve the crashing problem.
posted by fuq at 11:10 AM on March 21, 2011

Response by poster: Resolved: I used MS Access.
posted by fuq at 9:13 AM on April 18, 2011

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