For some reason the Eee PC ships with OpenOffice 2.3 preloaded instead of the more current OpenOffice.org 2.3. Since I don't really need to do much more than basic word processing, that doesn't concern me much. But I have noticed that there's no in-line spell checking. You know, the thing that underlines spelling errors in red as you make them?

I figured there was just a package missing, so I went and installed AbiWord, one of my favorite open source word processors. It turns out there was no in-line spellchecking on AbiWord at first either. But then I installed the "aspell" package and it worked like magic.

But no luck with OpenOffice.org.

So I did a little more digging and discovered that OpenOffice.org uses "myspell" instead of aspell. Since the OpenOffice.org build for the Eee has smaller toolbars and fonts, I uninstalled AbiWord and installed myspell and all is right with the world.

So to make a long story short, here's how to enable in-line spellchecking:

  1. Add "http://http.us.debian.org/debian/ stable main" to your repository list.
  2. Open up a console window.
  3. Type "sudo apt-get install myspell-en-us"
  4. Enter "y" when asked
  5. Open up OpenOffice.org Writer and mispell a word.

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