HomeTechnicalopenoffice spell check doesn’t work


openoffice spell check doesn’t work — 17 Comments

  1. Thanks for the info above… after install of oo 2.4.1 spellcheck didn’t work (WTF for sure!). Windows XP Service Pack 3; updates applied blah blah…

    So followed your instructions and restarted oo writer app and no joy.

    The status bar at the bottom of the Writer window confirms that Australian English is active; but activating spellchecker doesn’t find ANY mistakes at all. Of course ‘inline’ spell checker doesn’t as well (obviously related).

    Makes me wonder why such a simple and necessary feature should be soooo difficult to make work?? Even if we’ve never used oo before.

    Any help/suggestions appreciated.

    Kind regards,
    Warwick (Perth, Western Australia).

  2. Hi Warwick,

    Which suggestion did you try?

    I mention 2 possible solutions:

    – Change to UK (or US) english (easiest)

    – Install the Aus dictionary (more difficult, but better for a “real” aussie).

  3. Quick note to say these instructions worked for me (after a restart of OO writer and quickstarter) and thanks a bunch! It’s been driving me mad.
    I too have OO 2.4.1, WinXP Pro SP3. Not sure what might be different to Warwick…
    I used the “install Aussie dictionary” method.

    – Michael

  4. I am using 2.4 on linux and I do ont have an option/wizard to install dictionaries. I ave justb installed Sun Java 1.6 and the letter wizard states that it is defective!

  5. Hi Tony. I haven’t done much work with OO on linux.

    But it sound like OO hasn’t been installed correctly.

    Try re-installing it, and make sure you do a full OO installation.

  6. I know this is old, but if you still exist .. this works great, but I’m stuck with all my previous documents, each in excess of 50 pages in length, set to previous languages (English USA and English UK). The only way I’ve found to change the document languages to English Australia is to spell a word wrong in every paragraph and change the dictionary language one paragraph at a time. Is there a way to change the whole document language at once, or better yet, every document my oo ever opens?

  7. Hi Minty,

    What you say doesn’t quite make sense to me.

    A document is not “aware” of its language… it could be written in italian, or whatever.

    Its OO that spell checks a document (either when you open the document (wavey line under misspelt words), or when you hit the F7 key).

    So if you want to Aussie spell check your previous documents, just open them up, hit F7, correct what you need, then save.

    You should only need to change the dictionary once, and then OO will use that dictionary from that point onwards.

  8. Thanks for your reply, but I guess I don’t explain things very well because I get that a lot. Here is an example of what I mean:

    I open an older document that was made before I installed the Australian spelling dictionary, and when it was written, I used the USA dictionary. For the sake of simplifying this example, let’s say I change a sentence to include the word “colour.” That word would be underlined with the red squiggly line, so I right-click it, and get the following options:

    Ignore All
    Auto Correct
    Word is English (Australia)
    Paragraph is English (Australia)

    Apparently, OO recognises the document as written in English (USA) even though were I to create a new document, it would automatically use the Australian dictionary.

    So, I add the word “colour” to every paragraph, right click that word and pick “Paragraph is English (Australia),” then I delete the word.

  9. Sorry for a second bout of rambling, but I thought of another thing that works for me:

    Open old document that makes Open Office think “colour” is spelled wrong.
    Select all and copy.
    Open blank Notepad.
    Paste text into Notepad.
    Select all and copy text from Notepad.
    Open new blank text document in Open Office.

    Removes all font-related formatting.
    Does not work in documents too large for Notepad to handle.

    If I do this, the document will be checked using the English (Australia) dictionary from that moment on, but I will have lost my formatting.

    If only there was a “Document is English (Australia)” option from that drop-down menu =)

  10. Hmmm, I would have used the F7 key… but to be honest, I haven’t tried OO in the way you have.

    What about: simultaneously open 2 OO documents… an old “US” one, and a blank new one… then copy/paste everything from the old one to the new one, then save the new one as “old document name 2”

  11. I tried the F7 key before, but for some reason, when I did that, I had to change it from USA to Australia with every word that it found, which is even worse.

    I’ve also tried copying the text without going through Notepad, but for some reason, when I do that, it remembers what languages each paragraph is written in unless I remove all formatting. The problem is, I wanna remove the language and keep the formatting.

    OO is telling me now that there is an update available, but the download site is not responding, so I’ll try it again later. Maybe there are some new features I can use.

    Oh, hey, is there a way to remove the USA and UK dictionaries from OO? I wonder if it would default to Australia in the absence of those dictionaries that I will never use in my life!

  12. Well at least I won’t be creating any more weird documents, *thanks* to the advice I found on this page, and I’ll just deal with the older ones on a case-by-case basis.

  13. To fix this problem in your older documents open them in Open Office, then under the “tools” menu select: Options / Language Settings / Languages

    Under “Language of – User Interface” select the new language/dictionary (the one that’s working for spell check)

    Under “Default Languages for Documents – Western” select the same working language/dictionary.

    If you tick off the box next to “For the current document only” it will apply those languages to just that document. If you leave it unchecked it will apply to all documents. I suggest if you have these settings with the box unchecked and old files are still not working right open each document, and apply the check box and it should work properly.

    Hope this helps!!!

    I have a question of my own…. for those of you who use open office, with a dictionary that is doing spell check, have you ever had an issue where words that are clearly misspelled are STILL not getting flagged? Most of my typos are getting flagged, but not all of them. It’ll be words with missing letters that couldn’t possibly be correct, but spell check never flags them even while other words are getting flagged. If anyone can think of what the problem there might be I would apprecaite your advice!


  14. EXcellent response for OO spellcheck problem. I’m a recent convert and v. supportive but the OO sites didn’t get near it. Bless ’em. Of course if I looked harder and longer I might have found it but you know what net users are like. We want and amswer now. Fixed it for me – Thanks Mark

  15. I’m currently using OOo version 3.3 and recently I had a problem where the inline spell checker wasn’t catching misspelled words, deliberate or otherwise. After poking around I found that my “Check spelling as you type” option had been unticked. If you’re having the same problem, go to tools > options > Language Settings > Writing Aids and under Options see if it is checked. Hope this helps!