Libre Office 5 Calc Paste Column Bug

For the as yet uninitiated, Libre Office is a freely available alternative to the popular Microsoft Office suite.

Now if you’re looking for Sharepoint, you’re in the wrong place.  But if you want a good word processor or spreadsheet application at a infinitely cheaper price (i.e. free!) then look no further.

However, we have come across a teensy weensy bug that’s a little bit frustrating – so we’re giving you the heads up now so you can avoid it.

When using Calc, Libre Office’s answer to Excel, you’ll probably find now and then that you want to copy a whole column and paste it over on another column.  Calc has the look and feel of Excel, so just as you would do there, you click the cell letter heading:

Once selected, you can then press CTRL + C (or right click, copy) to copy the column.  After you’ve done this, you’ll notice the familiar dancing dashed line around the area (in this case the column) that you’ve copied:

Now there are two ways you could approach the next step.  First you might select the first cell of the column where you want to move the data to:

But another way that will be familiar to many spreadsheet users is selecting the column itself – just as we did before we copied the last column, by clicking on the column header letter and selecting the whole target column:

But whatever you do, don’t do it!  Well the select part is OK, but if you’ve selected the whole of the target column as in the image above, do not, under any circumstances press CTRL – V (or paste) now!  Doing so will almost immediately crash Libre Office 5 Calc.  If you leave it a little longer, it may well even crash your computer.

So just to be safe, when copying one column to the other, make sure you use the first cell selection method and not the column selection method.

It’s a little bug and it’s a bit annoying if you do it accidentally (which hopefully after this heads up you won’t do now!).  Hopefully, it’ll be fixed in Libre Office 6 – we’ll let you know when we find out!