[blfs-support] AbiWord build report (Was: Re: Ways to convert a .doc to something more civil.)

Aleksandar Kuktin akuktin at gmail.com
Mon Dec 9 11:59:51 PST 2013

>On Sat, 7 Dec 2013 01:34:24 +0100
>Aleksandar Kuktin <akuktin at gmail.com> wrote:
> Okay, I got it. I love the font AbiWord is using by default.
> A couple of things needed a couple of patches. I'll push them to the
> list tomorrow, it's late now.

Well, it took me a while.

These are some of AbiWords dependencies:
  fribidi >= 0.10.4
  glib-2.0 >= 2.6.0 gthread-2.0 >= 2.6.0 gobject-2.0 >= 2.6.0
  libgsf-1 >= 1.12
  wv-1.0 >= 1.2.0
  enchant >= 1.2.0 gio-2.0 
  cairo-pdf cairo-ps pangocairo
  gtk+-2.0 >= 2.12.0 gtk+-unix-print-2.0 librsvg-2.0 >= 2.16.0

Others are libpng, jpeg, zlib and possibly a few others. Libgsf also
has a dependency on libxml2.

Libgsf is the GNOME structured file library and you will have problems
with her. Basically, libgsf has a header dependency on libxml2 but it's
pkg-config file makes no mention of it. As a result of that, unless the
package requiring libgsf has the foresight to also include libxml2's
header path in its -I argument list, the build will fail. wv2 has this
problem. I solved this by adding an extra compile and link option flag
into libgsf's pkg-config file. The proper solution is to make it
include libxml2's pkg-config file to get the site-specific options in a
site-agnostic way.

AbiWord can not be built against wv2, it *needs* wv-1.*. Keep that in

New versions of packages, namely glib and libpng will give you some
headaches. I have glib-2.34.0 and libpng-1.5.10. Sometime ago, glib
decided that you can not just include its various headers directly, but
that you can only include glib.h. It will give an error if you try to
do it otherwise. Attached patches abiword-2.8.6--new_glib-1.patch and
fribidi-0.19.6--novi_glib.patch solve that particular problem.
Aditionally, libpng has, since version 1.5 changed the API and hidden a
bunch of data structures that were previously visible. As a
consequence, some packages need to be patched - among them AbiWord. The
attached patch abiword-2.8.6--libpng15-1.patch does that task.

Once libgsf has been fixed and others patched, building it is a breeze
and pretty straightforward, unlike OpenOffice (I imagine LibreOffice is
not mutch better). If only I can find a .xls/.xlsx/.od* spreadsheet and
presentation program like AbiWord, all would be well.

You don't need an AI for a robot uprising.
Humans will do just fine.
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