[ale] Printing a Database from Linux

Eric Z. Ayers eric.ayers at mindspring.com
Sun Aug 15 14:02:32 EDT 1999

Someone at the meeting on Thursday asked about printing a database
from Linux.  I ran across unixODBC which supports several freely
available databases (like Postgres SQL) which can be linked in with
Star Office.  You can find unixODBC from http://www.freshmeat.net.
There is another ODBC driver for Unix called iODBC.  I don't know what 
the differences are.  This should give you the functionality you
wanted to be able to mimic what you can do with Microsoft Office and
Microsoft Access.

The list of sofware you need is somewhat daunting, but basically, they 
hook together like this.  

Application --> ODBC library --> Database Driver --> Database

Star Office --> unixODBC --> MyODBC --> MySQL server

  or the Microsoft equivalent:

Excel --> Windows ODBC library --> Microsoft Access ODBC driver --> Access

I have been able to sucessfully compile it with Mysql 3.22.25 and MyODBC
2.50.24.  (I'm running Red Hat 5.2).  To get the GUI to work, you will 
need to install the Qt 2.0 RPM.  I haven't configured it yet (working
on it.)


(from the unixODBC user documentation)

StarOffice is an application similar in goals to MS Office. A free version, for non-commercial use, can be downloaded from
StarDivisions web site. Figure 7 shows a PostgreSQL table being browsed in StarOffice. StarOffice can use ODBC data but
it can be tricky to get going. Here are some things to note about using StarOffice with unixODBC. Make sure that unixODBC
is installed on your machine before trying to use StarOffice ODBC on UNIX. 

                                               Figure 7

Q. StarOffice disappears when I try to load a list of ODBC DSNs and I get an error in my terminal window about some library
file missing? 

A. You may want to try adding this to your soffice start script export LD_PRELOAD=/usr/lib/libodbc.so   Your soffice start script can
be found in Office50/bin/soffice and can be edited with any text editor. If you are not sure of where libodbc.so is or where soffice is then
you may want to use the UNIX find command. 

Q. Do all ODBC drivers work with StarOffice? 

A. No. StarOffice is very demanding upon an ODBC driver. StarOffice needs many ODBC features in order to accept a driver. Two drivers
which are known to work are; 1. PostgreSQL and 2. MySQL. People are actively working on other drivers. 


StarOffice is a rising 'star' in the UNIX world. You can combine StarOffice with unixODBC to get at your data. With StarOffice
and unixODBC you can pull your data into a Spreadsheet, Word Processor or even create Web forms based upon your

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