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Why am I unable to set a graphic as a page background in writer document or if set it does not stick on reopening?

asked 2015-02-05 16:56:58 +0200

MedicBob gravatar image

updated 2016-03-12 21:15:59 +0200

Alex Kemp gravatar image

using Version: in windows 8.1 I am following the instructions for setting a page background exactly. I select Graphic from the list. Then I click on the browse button an select the graphic (a .jpg file). Sometimes a link check box appears which I check, sometimes just the words "unlinked graphic" appear. I click apply and close. Most time nothing changes but occasionally the graphic appears as the background. I am really frustrated and need to find a way to set a graphic as a page background.

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answered 2015-02-06 07:18:03 +0200

ROSt52 gravatar image

updated 2015-02-06 07:19:24 +0200

The way to add a background is:

Format > Page > tab Background > As -> choose Graphic > Browse to the graphic you want (eg. jpg-file) > Link: you don't need to link > type -> choose the the type you want > preview -> check > Apply and you should the background already > OK

If this does not give you the background you want, please describe step by step what you did and what was the result of each step. Ideally even add screenshots.

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Just for avoiding misunderstandings by 'FRESH' users reading this. The tab 'Background does no longer exist in LibreOffice 4.4.0. There is now a tab 'Area' providing access to background setting. This at least on in.

Lupp gravatar imageLupp ( 2015-02-06 08:57:49 +0200 )edit

@Lupp - thanks for the information concerning v4.4.0. I haven't touched yet v4.4. I am using v4.3.5.2. I wonder a bit why "Area" is supposed to be better than "Background".

ROSt52 gravatar imageROSt52 ( 2015-02-06 09:16:46 +0200 )edit

Version To me it looks as if graphics (picture, jpg) bacground has been removed totally - there's only "area: gradient, bmp etc" and no "browse for picture to use as background" if you want to create a page format with your own graphics background (typically kind of light-color fill, eg. gradient with corners, produced by some other program).

donax gravatar imagedonax ( 2015-08-08 15:30:00 +0200 )edit

With "Area", there is still no way to use a custom image like "Background" could. Is there any way to use custom images as backgrounds in newer versions of Writer?

pfirsch gravatar imagepfirsch ( 2015-08-12 13:13:35 +0200 )edit

Is there no way of using vector images as backgrounds? This is possible in LibreOffice Calc (, where the user interface still says Background/Graphic rather than Area/Bitmap, as well as in the Writer apps of NeoOffice and OpenOffice (in all cases using WMF/EMF files). Even if a vector background is added using an app that supports it, the background does not show up in LibreOffice Writer. Even if WMF/EMF support is too complicated, an ability to add SVG or Draw graphics would be useful.

Otto G gravatar imageOtto G ( 2015-12-06 13:41:51 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-12-08 12:41:57 +0200

Lupp gravatar image

updated 2015-12-08 12:51:18 +0200

Did you actually try it? I want to confirm the answer by @ROSt52 and to add that my few tests led to documents also correctly reloading on open. This will not work if a graphic was imported as link and the document dislocated to anotehr path after closing.

Despite the fact that the offered choice 'Bitmap' suggests a tough restriction, other formats for graphics are also accepted vie 'Import Graphic'. .

I also want to announce that I filed this bug report tdf#96336 concerning the inconsistency of 'Format' > 'Page' dialogs. You may contribute your experiences there.

Disclaimer: I personally never used background graphic (except for a watermark surrogate in a few cases), and I did not test the variants.

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Asked: 2015-02-05 16:56:58 +0200

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Last updated: Dec 08 '15