How to Count Words in LibreOffice Writer and OpenOffice Writer

How to Count Words in LibreOffice Writer and OpenOffice Writer

Last Updated on August 15, 2022

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Last Updated on August 15, 2022

No matter which app you use in your writing profession or hobby, you’ll sooner or later need to know how many words are in a document. In this article, I’ll show you how to count words in LibreOffice Writer. You’ll also learn to count words in OpenOffice Writer.

This tutorial includes images from the Windows and Mac versions of the apps discussed. The panels look different but include the same settings whether on Mac or Windows computers.

How to count words in LibreOffice Writer

When you count words in LibreOffice, one method is similar to seeing your word count in Microsoft Word. You’ll find the word count and number of characters (including spaces) in the bottom status bar on the left side.

Click on the word count number in the status bar to see the following:

  • Word count.
  • Character count with spaces.
  • Character count without spaces.
count words in libreoffice writer
Click on the word count number in the LibreOffice Writer to see more details.

You can also see the same information box by going to the Tools menu, then selecting Word Count (Tools > Word Count).

You can also see a standardized page count there based on an average number of characters per page. You’ll first have to activate it, though.

To activate the standardized page count:

  1. Go to LibreOffice > Preferences on a Mac or Tools > Options in Windows.
  2. Click on Writer in the left column.
  3. Click on General.
  4. Under Word Count, check the box beside Show Standardized Word Count.

The default character per page number is 1800, but you can change it in the box labeled Characters Per Standardized Page.

How to count words in a selection of text in LibreOffice Writer

You can also see the word count for a selection of text in LibreOffice Writer.

Select the text that you want to count. In the bottom bar you will see the word count for that selection.

word count in libreoffice writer bottom bar
Word count in the bottom bar of LibreOffice Writer

You will also see the selection word count from Tools > Word Count. You’ll see a second column of statistics that contains the counts for the selected text.

count words in libreoffice writer
Word count in LibreOffice Writer including selection word count.

See more document statistics in LibreOffice Writer

You can also see your document word count is a list of more complete statistics in LibreOffice Writer. To see those statistics:

  1. Open the File menu.
  2. Select Properties
  3. Open the Statistics tab.
document statistics panel libreoffice writer for windows
The document statistics panel in LibreOffice Writer for Windows.

In addition to your word count, you’ll also see the following statistics.

  • Number of pages.
  • Number of tables.
  • Number of OLE objects (such as linked images).
  • Number of images.
  • Number of paragraphs.
  • Number of characters (numbers, letters, symbols, etc.).
  • Number of characters excluding spaces.
  • Number of lines.
document statistics in libreoffice writer for macs
Additional statistics in the LibreOffice Writer for Macs document properties panel.

Note that the specific word count for selected text will not show in the list of document statistics.

How to count words in OpenOffice Writer

OpenOffice is not a new app by any stretch of the imagination, but it has a very minimalist approach to word count.

To count words in OpenOffice Writer documents:

  • Open the document.
  • Go to the Tools menu at the top.
  • Select Word Count.

A box will open that displays two sections. The bottom section displays character and word counts including spaces for the entire document.

count words in openoffice writer
OpenOffice Writer word count panel.

How to count words in a selection of text in OpenOffice Writer

There are two ways to see the word count in a selection. The first is to select your text, then look in the word count area near the left side of the footer bar.

The second method for finding the word count of a selection of text in OpenOffice Writer is via Word Count in the Tools menu.

The top section will indicate the number of words and characters including spaces in a selection of text.

count words in selection of openoffice writer document
Word count panel in OpenOffice Writer showing counts for document and selection.

There must be text selected within the document to display a count in the top section.

See additional document statistics in OpenOffice Writer

Because OpenOffice Writer and LibreOffice Writer are based on the same original code, there are a lot of similarities. You can see a more complete list of document statistics from the File menu in OpenOffice Writer.

To see those statistics:

  1. Open the File menu.
  2. Select Properties
  3. Open the Statistics tab.
openoffice writer document statistics panel
The OpenOffice Writer document statistics panel.

In addition to your word count, you’ll also see the same statistics that LibreOffice Writer provides. They are:

  • Number of pages.
  • Number of tables.
  • Number of OLE objects (such as linked images).
  • Number of images.
  • Number of paragraphs.
  • Number of characters (numbers, letters, symbols, etc.).
  • Number of characters excluding spaces.
  • Number of lines.

Additional resources

If you are writer who expects to format your work into a book, you might be interested in our article How Many Words Are On a Page?

You’ll find official LibreOffice documentation here.

You’ll find official OpenOffice documentation here.

About the author:

Tom Buford

About the author:

Tom Buford

Tom Buford - writer at thetechiesenior.com

Tom has enjoyed learning and using computer technology for more than 25 years. At several years north of 65, he finds writing about it and teaching it more enjoyable and interesting than ever. He has been happily married to his bride for more than 48 years and enjoys living with her and their adopted cats in rural Tennessee. Tom is also a published fiction and non-fiction author.

Tom Buford - writer at thetechiesenior.com

Tom has enjoyed learning and using computer technology for more than 25 years. At several years north of 65, he finds writing about it and teaching it more enjoyable and interesting than ever. He has been happily married to his bride for more than 48 years and enjoys living with her and their adopted cats in rural Tennessee. Tom is also a published fiction and non-fiction author.

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