[ptsefton.com] | [CV & Bio]

New Weblog plugin for OpenOffice.org Writer: Won't connect to wordpress.com


Simon Phipps writes about a new $13.18 (that's Australian dollars) plugin for OpenOffice.org and StarOffice that purports to be a weblog editor.

In our first venture to fund Sun's OpenOffice.org developers through an add-on product, we've released Sun Weblog Publisher, a plug-in for OpenOffice.org or StarOffice 8 that turns it into a full-featured blog editor. At only $9.95 it's exceptional value, and it directly supports our efforts to keep OpenOffice.org development rolling.


I have tried it out but I can't recommend it.

I normally wouldn't buy a bit of software that I don't need, with no free trial, but I just had to try it, 'cos I've been wanting to see the issue of HTML export from OpenOffice.org addressed properly. I don't expect this to actually work for anything except plain paragraphs, for reasons discussed here many times before but I thought I should prove the point. Except that I can't prove it 'cos I can't post with it to see how it works.

First up, I went and set up an account at http://ptsefton.wordpress.com. That was easy.

Buying the software from Sun was a bit harder – I accidentally clicked something that said 'check' beneath my credit card details – turned out that meant I wanted to pay by cheque – only I didn't and there was no way to uncheck all the payment options I didn't want, so I ended up with an extra order I don't intend to pay for.

It's not supposed to work on Mac OS X in NeoOffice but it installs OK and it made a connection to ptsefton.wordpress.com  once I realised that I had to go into the settings in NeoOffice and tell it not to use a web proxy (choose None rather than System).

I wrote some text.

Then I looked around for preview button to see what the HTML was going to be like. Nope.

Tried to publish and discovered that it won't connect to Wordpress.com any more. I can get a sort-of connection to the server, it seems, by turning on and off the proxy but I can't post. Half an hour of that was enough, so I headed off to Blogger to try my luck with an account there. That wouldn't work either, same complaint from the software:


Then I tried:

  1. Connecting to the university network via VPN and configuring a proxy server in NeoOffice.

  2. Changing my Wordpress password.

  3. The X11 version of OpenOffice.org on the Mac (also not supposed to work and I can confirm that it doesn't. It won't install properly.).

  4. The Windows version of OpenOffice.org on the PC at home (2.0.4 on XP SP2) which is supposed to work. Same symptoms as NeoOffice, mostly, only worse.

  5. All of the above with the Bogger account.

No luck.

And the site says:

There is no product support for Sun Weblog Publisher. If you have feedback about the product you can email them to Weblog-Publisher-feedback@sun.com

I'll do that.