Using Arc and Open Office on Math Department Computers

CAUTION: Things change on math department computers, so configurations, defaults, etc. might be different from what is here.

The math department computer labs are Unix based and use the Linux operating system. The desktop configuration may vary from lab to lab or computer to computer, so the best thing to do is to ask someone in the lab how to use the computer, then experiment with help, etc. until you get familiar with the system.

ArcTo run Arc, type in a terminal window:


(Depending on which computer you are using, one way to get a terminal window is to go to Debian on the Applications menu, then XShells, then Terminal.)

The Arc Unix interface is a little less user friendly than the Mac or Windows interfaces, but is close enough that the instructions in the textbook will still apply with at most minor modifications. The main difference are that the terminal window will become the arc window,and another window , labeled "Menu Bar" will appear.

    To load a file:
    Note that new menus will appear next to the Arc menu. Use these to work with the data set.

To quit, go to "quit" in the Arc menu.

Open Office:

To run Open Office:

On the Applications menu,  go to the  "Office" menu, then to " Word Processor"

The first time you run the command, you may be asked to go through an installation procedure. Just click "next" or "OK" using whatever the default selections are.

Use Open Office just as you would Microsoft Office.

Copying from Arc to Open Office:

Copying text: Highlight the text you want to copy from Arc, and use Copy from the Edit menu. You can then paste to an Open Office document  as in Microsoft Word, or by clicking the middle mouse button.

Copying graphics: To copy a graphic from Arc, use Save to File from the Menu menu in the window of the graphic . If you do not give a name to the file, it will be saved as a postscript file named To import the graphic into Open Office, you need to convert it to either png or jpg format. To convert to png format, type in  terminal window (not the window in which Arc is running):

    convert newfilename.png,

where "filename" is the name of the saved postscript file and "newfilename" is the name you wish to call the new png file, and press Enter. You can convert to jpg analogously. You may need to experiment with which works best for you.

    To insert the graphic into Open Office, go to Picture on the Insert menu of Open Office, then to From File. The graphic file should be in your home directory. Select "All formats" under "file type" if necessary. Once you have selected the file, click "Open" to insert it. You can move or resize the graphic after you have inserted it into the Office Office document, but other changes such as background color or removing plot controls need to be done before saving it from Arc. You may need to experiment with sizing either in Arc or in Open Office to get the complete graphic to insert.