Opening and saving files on remote servers

Remote Files Service User Guide

LibreOffice can open and save files stored on remote servers. Keeping files on remote servers allows to work with the documents using different computers. For example, you can work on a document in the office during the day and edit it at home for last-minute changes. Storing files on a remote server also protects them from computer loss or hard disk failure. Some servers are also able to check in and check out files, thus controlling their usage and access.

LibreOffice supports many document servers that use well known network protocols such as FTP, WebDAV, Windows share, and SSH. It also supports popular services like Google Drive as well as commercial and open source servers that implement the OASIS CMIS standard.

To work with a remote file service you must first setup a remote file connection.

To open a file in a remote file service

  1. Do one of the following:

The Remote Files dialog appears.

  1. Select the file and click Open or press Enter.

The Remote Files dialog which then appears has many parts. The upper list box contains the list of remote servers you have previously defined. The line below the list box shows the path to access the folder. On the left is the folder structure of the user space in the server. The main pane displays the files in the remote folder.

Checking out and checking in files

The Check Out and Check In actions control updates to the document and prevent unwanted overwrites in a CMIS remote service.

Checking out a document locks it, preventing other users from writing changes to it. Only one user can have a particular document checked out (locked) at any time. Checking in a document or canceling the checkout unlocks the document.


There are no checkin/checkout controls for remote files in Windows Shares, WebDAV, FTP and SSH services.

When a file is open from a CMIS remote file service, LibreOffice displays a Check Out button on the top message area. Click the Check Out button to lock the file in the server to prevent edition by another user. Alternatively choose File - Check Out.

LibreOffice creates a working copy of the file in the server (and inserts the string (Working Copy) in the file name) when a file is checked out. Every edition and save operation is done in the working copy. You can save your file as many times you want. When you finished your changes, check in the file.

To check in the file, choose File - Check In. A dialog opens to insert comments about the last edition. These comments are recorded in the CMIS server for version control. The working copy replaces the existing file and its version number is updated.

To cancel a checkout, choose File - Cancel Checkout. A warning message will inform that the latest edition will be discarded. If confirmed, no version updates occurs.


Remember to check in the file when finishing using it. Not doing so will lock the file and no other user will be allowed to modify it.

To save a file in a remote file server

  1. Do one of the following

The Remote files dialog appears. Select the remote file server.

  1. In the Filter list box, select the desired format.

  2. Enter a name in the File name box and click Save.

  3. When you finish working with the file, check it in. To do so, choose File - Check In.

Properties of files stored in CMIS servers

Files stored in CMIS server have properties and metadata not available in a local storage. These metadata are important for controls and debugging of the CMIS connection and server implementation. All parameters displayed are read-only.

Choose File - Properties, CMIS tab.

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