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Thread: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    12

    Wink Re: Dark theme fix.

    hello all. I was wondering if anyone has found another solution to this issue. I'm a mandriva user, but their forums suck when it comes to technical issues outside of the mandriva scope. I've also found that this forum 9/10 has helped me with my issues. I hope you all welcome me with open arms still!

    Anyway, if no one has an alternative solution, I might be able to provide one. I'm on the PC at the moment, which runs XP, and my laptop is not currently with me.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    12

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!
    Is there a way to apply different themes to different applications?
    Yes there is. I have "the" ultimate dark desktop IMO http://www.gnome-look.org/content/sh...?content=88344 for those who would like to see a very usable dark desktop with a screenschot of openoffice workaround.

    You can force an application to use a specific theme. For example, mandriva control centre (MCC) has fixed font colors that can't be forced to change with a theme configuration, so with my dark theme, the text was no where to be seen as the background and text were both black. I created a script that forced MCC to use a lighter theme. Simple. I did the same with openoffice, and will continue to do so to any other application that clashes with dark themes.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Beans
    5
    Distro
    Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Hey guys, I think I found the setting to fix some issues. A more complete fix/hack is linked and quoted below.

    Change page color:

    Open OpenOffice Writer
    Click Tools --> Options --> OpenOffice.org dropdown box --> Appearance

    From there, you can change the color of your page if that's your problem

    If your Writer is in "High Contrast" mode try this:

    Open OpenOffice Writer
    Click Tools --> Options --> OpenOffice.org dropdown box --> Accessibility
    Uncheck "Automatically detect high contrast mode of operating system"

    If your OpenOffice is super screwed up by dark themes, try this neat hack from Adam Stovicek:

    http://www.rebelzero.com/fixes/ooodarkgtkworkaround

    I'd been having issues with colors in OpenOffice.org applications while using a dark GTK2.0 theme for my Gnome environment. OpenOffice.org applications would start in a high contrast mode and would not display the pages with correct coloring. What you would see on the screen could be far different from what you print. Apparently this is a known bug at OpenOffice's bug tracker, but there's yet to be a fix. One commenter posts that it still persists in the 3.0 Beta.

    The Ubuntu forums had this asked and answered with a workaround, but that broke with the new release of 8.04 Hardy Heron. I couldn't find an updated workaround and between desperation, aggravation, and a lack of patience, motivation set in and I went about to find one of my own.

    First a short lesson. The shell scripts that run all of OO.o's applications are found in the following directory:

    /usr/lib/openoffice/program/

    Each of the OO.o applications has its own shell script.

    * swriter - OpenOffice.org Word Processor
    * scalc - OpenOffice.org Spreadsheet
    * sbase - OpenOffice.org Database
    * simpress - OpenOffice.org Presentation
    * smath - OpenOffice.org Math
    * sdraw - OpenOffice.org Drawing

    Each of these executes one main shell script, soffice, while passing it an argument that defines what application you're planning on using. It's this file we'll be using in our workaround

    In order to tell OO.o what theme to use, we set an environment variable pointing to the gtkrc file of that theme while we execute that script for that program. For instance, the following would launch OpenOffice.org Word Processor with Ubuntu's Human them:

    sudo env GTK2_RC_FILES=/usr/share/themes/Human/gtk-2.0/gtkrc /usr/lib/openoffice/program/swriter

    Two flaws with this is 1) because you need to root privileges to set environment variables, you inadvertently run OO.o applications with root privileges as well, and 2) it's a hassle to have to do this manually. You could edit each of the OO.o shell scripts and include the above environment variables such as...

    #!/bin/sh

    cmd='dirname "$0"'/soffice
    exec "$cmd" -writer "$@"

    ...would become...

    #!/bin/sh

    cmd='dirname "$0"'/soffice
    exec env GTK2_RC_FILES=/usr/share/themes/Human/gtk-2.0/gtkrc "$cmd" -writer "$@"

    ... but that would be a hassle to change them all over again if you change your mind in the future. I thought it best to edit just one. Unfortunately, this resulted in a small error in which I had to adjust another file to make it all work.

    First thing I did was rename the soffice file. Open a terminal and at the command line just move it.

    sudo mv /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice1

    Now, make a new soffice file.

    sudo gedit /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice

    Paste the following shell script code and save the file.

    #!/bin/sh
    env GTK2_RC_FILES=/usr/share/themes/Human/gtk-2.0/gtkrc /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice1 "$@"

    Next, make it executable.

    sudo chmod +x /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice

    Here is what I though would be the end of it, but the original soffice script actually sets the name of the binary program that is used based on its own file name. Since we renamed it to soffice1, we also need to rename soffice.bin to soffice1.bin. (Brave souls can skip this and see the Plan B at the end.)

    sudo mv /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice.bin /usr/lib/openoffice/program/soffice1.bin

    Now, each and every OpenOffice.org app should launch using the Ubuntu Human theme to display the correct layout coloring. I had mixed results when using other themes. Some worked well while others didn't work at all. The dark theme that I'm using, Overglossed by TheRob, gives me dark-blue panel colors with some themed areas, but high contrast icons. Layout color was incorrect. Slickness-Black, also by TheRob, forces OO.o applications into their default high contrast mode. For myself, I'll stick with the Human theme so I can enjoy the graphs in my spreadsheets the way they were intended.

    Now, this assumes that nothing about your OpenOffice.org installation will change any time soon. This workaround could very well break with a future update to OpenOffice.org. It would be very likely to break between Hardy Heron and Intrepid Ibex. But that's why we call this a workaround and not a fix.

    If something needs clarifying, don't hesitate to ask.
    Thanks to Adam Stovicek for figuring out this little hack. Try and see if these work.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    12

    Smile Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Hi again. The above hack previously mentioned is exactly how I get OpenOffice to work. I force it to use clearlooks-quicksilver. I can confirm that this hack does indeed work.

    NOTE: Some themes work better than others, so if you don't succeed at first, try using a different gtkrc file from another theme. Happy modding.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Seattle
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    5
    Distro
    Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Thanks for verifying donoterase, I was waiting until someone else tried it
    Hopefully I'll get more courageous with these hacks as time goes on

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    12

    Smile Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Not a problem. Another point worthy of mentioning is that this hack can be applied to other applications that don't work well with dark themes. For example, i use this hack to force gedit and Mandriva Control Center to use lighter themes for usability. Happy hacking. In the meantime please check out my dark theme here: http://gnome-look.org/content/show.p...80549fb3181d84

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Ohio, USA
    Beans
    15
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Quote Originally Posted by robotmechanic View Post
    If your OpenOffice is super screwed up by dark themes, try this neat hack from Adam Stovicek:

    http://www.rebelzero.com/fixes/ooodarkgtkworkaround

    Thanks to Adam Stovicek for figuring out this little hack. Try and see if these work.
    Unfortunately, I've come down with a bit of OCD over that website and overhauled it. This makes all the links people have graciously added to forums broken. My fault. Same text at it's new page:

    http://www.rebelzero.com/fixes/openo...h-ubuntu-804/8

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Rome, Italy
    Beans
    50
    Distro
    Ubuntu Breezy 5.10

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    Quote Originally Posted by chunchengch View Post
    Some dark GTK themes are compatible well with the OpenOffice.Org, such as DigitalDark, if the OpenOffice.Org, especially Calc, messes up with the dark theme, you can remove packages openoffice.org-gtk and openoffice.org-gnome to use the default style of OpenOffice.Org.

    $ sudo apt-get remove openoffice.org-gtk openoffice.org-gnome

    One day if you find a dark theme available, basically, you need only to install openoffice.org-gtk to make OpenOffice.Org to apply the theme.

    $ sudo apt-get install openoffice.org-gtk
    This worked perfectly for me, and the result with my dark theme was quite good!
    Thanx a lot

    RaiD996

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Berkeley
    Beans
    157
    Distro
    Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    robotmechanic, Thanks a lot. it worked great!
    Ubuntu user since 06/2006.
    "Don’t Let School get in the way of your Education!"
    -Mark Twain

  10. #20
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Beans
    810

    Re: Dark theme makes OpenOffice unusable!

    I don't know what I did but robotmechanic's fix did not work for me. None of the OOo apps will start now. I am completely removing OOo and starting over since I have version 3 installed and i believe that this solution is for version 2.x

    *After a reinstall OOo now opens using the human theme when using my dark theme. Thanks for the solution.
    Last edited by BDNiner; February 14th, 2009 at 04:12 AM.

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