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Inserting a picture or photo in a libreoffice writer document [closed]

asked 2013-01-16 23:26:42 +0100

graviton gravatar image

updated 2015-08-23 18:08:05 +0100

Alex Kemp gravatar image

Hi! I did a quick search for an answer to my problem, which is, essentially, having a box of blank space appear where a photo or picture should be (that I've copied and pasted). My search offered two answers, neither of which worked. Answer one was to go to LibreOffice Writer tools, then options, then LibreOffice Writer, then View, and then enable graphics and objects under Display. The problem? It was ALREADY enabled. Another answer involved a "bit map" which a)didn't work because "bit map" didn't appear as an option and b)would have been an unacceptable solution even if it had worked because I can't be resorting to special measures every time I need to copy and paste something with a photo or picture of some sort since that occurs with almost every single document I compose.

I figure if Yahoo Mail can reproduce all photos and other graphics when I copy and paste them for an email, LibreOffice Writer should be able to do that too, and I'm surprised I'm having such trouble.

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Closed for the following reason question is not relevant or outdated by Alex Kemp
close date 2015-10-27 13:00:37.728320


Hi @graviton, It's not clear to me what you're trying to do. Do you want to insert an image and have the text flow around it?

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-17 04:03:59 +0100 )edit

Hi qubit, see below.

graviton gravatar imagegraviton ( 2013-01-17 05:48:20 +0100 )edit

@graviton, I just threw a couple of windows8 tags on this question. Still asking my peers for a win8 test machine. A few of them just received new windows laptops, all of which came with win7. Wondering if this an indication that the computer companies don't trust win8 yet...

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-21 21:27:16 +0100 )edit

Hi @graviton, Please file a bug report here. Please mention that you're working on Windows 8, and hopefully someone will be able to reproduce your bug on a different win8 machine. Good luck!

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-25 23:29:23 +0100 )edit

Hi @graviton,

Just checking back in with you. Did you get a chance to file a bug? If you do, please post a link to any bugs you file in a comment below using the format "fdo#123456". That will allow us to resolve this Question as BUG FILED.


qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-02-25 06:46:33 +0100 )edit

10 Answers

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answered 2013-01-19 11:12:32 +0100

Joe1234 gravatar image

updated 2013-01-19 11:18:08 +0100

Using LibO Writer 3.6.4 (the most recent stable version of the software) under Win XP, I hit first Ctrl-A on this page to select all text, graphics, etc., then Ctrl-C to copy to clipboard, then in Writer Ctrl-V to insert. Results:

  1. Font is changed to Times New Roman.
  2. The complex layout on this page (multiple indentations, shaded background, etc.) is lost in Writer: all text is left-justified to the same margin.
  3. Only two point sizes in pasted copy in Writer: 12 point for body text, 18 point for headlines.
  4. Clickable hyperlinks ("All", "Unanswered", "Followed", the headline) are preserved (using Ctrl-Click).
  5. Gravatars (the square avatars next to user names) at first did not show in Writer, I saw only "placeholders". Once I right-clicked on one of them, the gravatars all showed, as did the LibreOffice logo at the top.

Tried again inserting into Writer, but this time using "Paste Special --> HTML format". The results were identical, except this time I did not have to right-click on a graphic for all the graphics to show.

Next I went into my Yahoo mail and started a new message window ("Compose"). Pasted this page into the window. The results are much the same as with the paste into Writer, except that

  1. Text appears in Arial font.
  2. Clickable hyperlinks are preserved differently. You have to right-click on one and then select "Open in new tab [or window]"

Overall, I did not find that the layout of this page was preserved any better in Yahoo Mail than in Writer, except that

  • Yahoo Mail does not show the distracting horizontal lines that Writer inserts.

Purely out of curiosity, I also used Firefox to "show source" of this web page and copy-pasted that into Writer. As expected, only the HTML code shows in Writer, not the product (the layouted Web page). However, if someone wanted to reproduce exactly the layout of this page, that code would provide valuable pointers.

By the way, you probably want to keep in mind that much content on the Web (including and especially photographs) is copyrighted. It's legal to send other people links to the Web address where they appear, but you are breaking the law when you copy photographs and mail them to others.

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answered 2013-01-17 21:25:48 +0100

graviton gravatar image

Hiya qubit, little did I suspect that this problem would prove so resistant to solution!!

You asked: "Hmm. Interesting. I assume you're using Yahoo mail in the browser (right?), so the browser successfully copies the HTML and (possibly) the images as well. Oh! perhaps that's the issue: Are the images in an email embedded or are they links? Perhaps LO just isn't displaying a image linked by url.."

(By the way, qubit, you don't need to restrict yourself to "comments"--you certainly should feel free to use the "answer" section, regardless of whether your response solves the problem or not.)

Yes, I'm using Yahoo mail in Firefox, and I find it interesting that you are clearly finding it hard to believe that I'm reproducing all images and graphics from the website in my email. But just to be emphatic--it's not just the HTML, it's not just links--every single feature of the webpage that I've copied is replicated in the email precisely as it appears in the original.

The reason I reproduce articles in my emails rather than provide links to those articles is that I have some lazy and/or incurious friends!!! A bare link is much less provocative than the article itself, so if the latter is right in front of them they are more likely to read it.

So qubit, what happens when YOU copy and paste images from a web page into Yahoo Mail in Firefox?

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(quick follow-up) I'm not sure I have a Yahoo Mail account right now, but I'm going to test in GMail with whatever test page you guys are using... once I read through the rest of the comments on this page! :-) also, karma for you for being so descriptive

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-19 23:22:05 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-01-18 02:16:59 +0100

m.a.riosv gravatar image


With different LibreOffice versions, the images are showed after a while for update.

Paste do not embed the images in the document, but only the links, if you want the images embedded, you can do it breaking the links in Menu/Edit/Links -(Selecting links) - Break links. (in a text writer document).

In a HTML document, the links can not be breaking.

No issues pasting a single image.

Can you report a web link where to see the issues.

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@mariosv -- thanks for the sleuthing! When you say "in an html document, the links can not be breaking", what do you mean? Do you mean that you can't embed images if you Save As HTML from within LO?

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-18 09:54:12 +0100 )edit

@qubit, when you go trough Menu/File/New, you can select between others, HTML document.

m.a.riosv gravatar imagem.a.riosv ( 2013-01-18 22:08:55 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-01-17 05:57:34 +0100

graviton gravatar image

Hi qubit, I see that I'm forced to use this method of replying to you because of the extreme brevity required for comments.

Well, what I'm trying to do is copy and paste portions of webpages and portions of other sorts of things, including any photos, into my LibreOffice Writer documents. As I mentioned, I routinely do this for my Yahoo emails. While waiting for help on this I did some searching and learned about "Insert". As a result, I was able to insert a photo from a file of photos into a Writer document, but this is not really what I need to be able to do.

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Okay, I think I understand your question a bit better. How do you copy portions of webpages and paste them into Yahoo mail? Do you just use the mouse to highlight a portion of content, or?

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-17 06:03:09 +0100 )edit

Re: comment length limit, I do apologize for that problem. I've tried several times, unsuccessfully, to campaign for that limit to be increased, filed bugs, etc, but I have no power to effect change and, apparently, little audience to hear my requests. Using the Answer field is a clever alternative.

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-17 06:09:12 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-01-20 20:49:25 +0100

graviton gravatar image

Joe1234, qubit, thanks for your efforts, and for the information produced by them!!

So, we have come full circle, and I make again the comment I made in the post which began all this: “I figure if Yahoo Mail can reproduce all photos and other graphics when I copy and paste them for an email, LibreOffice Writer should be able to do that too.” So I figured right—based on what you two experienced, LibreOffice Writer IS able to do that too.

So now we have to figure out why mine is not. If I may, Joe1234, I'd like to ask you about a little remark you made in describing what you did. You said, in your most recent set of comments, “Again, right clicked one photo and soon after, all 17 photos appeared in all their glory in Writer.”

First, qubit, did you also have to right click a photo to make images appear? Second, Joe1234, obviously when someone normally copies and pastes, he doesn't have to do anything after pasting to make things appear. Third, I had already, several days ago, in desperation, tried right-clicking, left-clicking, simultaneous clicking, pounding on my keyboard, etc. and nothing had worked. But in light of your comment Joe1234, I tried again, and again, all four options presented to me after right-clicking yielded no photos when tried, nor did the options sound like they would yield photos.

So what's going on? I only began using LibreOffice a month ago, with my new computer. Is it possible that Windows 8 and LibreOffice don't yet fully mesh, and that's why I'm having this problem? Has copying and pasting images from a web page been tested in LibreOffice Writer using Windows 8?

Anyway, thanks again, Joe1234 and qubit, for your strenuous efforts on my behalf! I really appreciate it, even if they've not yet yielded fruit for me!

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Let's see (1) I pasted content into LO and just waited -- I didn't need to right click for the images to appear. (2) I'm testing w/Ubuntu 12.04.1 + LO, so it's possible there's something diff with LO on Win8. (3) If I can find a machine w/Win8 I will definitely run the test for you!

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-20 21:16:57 +0100 )edit

graviton, maybe you accidentally reduced the memory allocated in LibO to graphics files? Tools -> Options -> LibreOffice -> Memory -> Graphics cache. My own settings, which I don't know if they're factory default or not, are "Use for LibreOffice (MB): 24" and "Memory per object (MB): 5.2".

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-21 07:28:10 +0100 )edit

The right-clicking may or may not make a difference, it's just one of the things I try when the machine doesn't want to obey my commands promptly. Otherwise I'm afraid I've run out of ideas.

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-21 07:29:50 +0100 )edit

@qubit, graviton said that he'd experienced the same problem before on a comp running Win XP. Don't think it is anything to do with Win 8.

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-21 07:31:01 +0100 )edit

@Joe1234, re: testing this in WinXP, the line I see from graviton is "everything I say NOW about reproducing web pages in Yahoo Mail is equally true of my experience with Windows XP in Yahoo Mail." But I'm sure graviton can clarify. I'll continue looking for a win8 machine in the meantime

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-21 07:49:31 +0100 )edit

No, Joe1234, the first time I ever used LibreOffice was in the past month, with my new computer running Windows 8. My reference to Win XP had to do with copying and pasting successfully in Yahoo Mail.

graviton gravatar imagegraviton ( 2013-01-21 07:51:07 +0100 )edit

Joe1234, I just checked the Graphics cache settings and they are 20 MB and 5.2 MB, which is far more than was necessary for the itty bitty photos I was trying to copy and paste.

graviton gravatar imagegraviton ( 2013-01-21 07:55:21 +0100 )edit

qubit, you were exactly correct in what you said to Joe1234! And I really appreciate your trying to investigate whether Win 8 is responsible for my problems. THANKS A WHOLE LOT!

graviton gravatar imagegraviton ( 2013-01-21 07:58:54 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-03-24 14:53:54 +0100

I'm using Windows 8 64-bit and LibreOffice I successfully copy/paste Yahoo news articles, words and pictures, and afterwards break the links since I don't want to rely on internet connections always being available. I highlight what I want to copy, right click, copy, select the text document, right click, paste. No problem. Overall though, and much as Micro$oft annoys me, Word can do this more cleanly, faster, and with less effort. If you can afford the $$, it's the better choice imho.

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answered 2013-01-19 20:13:36 +0100

graviton gravatar image

Hello Joe1234, I'm delighted to see someone with such a scientific spirit attacking this problem, but I'm disappointed by the way you chose to conduct your experiment.

As I'm sure you know (probably far better than I) web pages often have portions that cannot be copied and pasted, and THIS web page is abundantly furnished with elements that resist highlighting (and therefore cannot be copied). Furthermore, it doesn't contain any photos, my principal concern. So, really, there cannot be a more unsuitable guinea pig for your experiment.

Let me note for the record that although for the past month I've had a new computer with Windows 8, for the prior six years I was using Windows XP like you, and everything I say NOW about reproducing web pages in Yahoo Mail is equally true of my experience with Windows XP in Yahoo Mail. And I am using, and have always used, Firefox, which works much better in this regard than other browsers, in my experience.

So, let's conduct some new experiments with web pages that are more relevant. (Since you evidently have copyright concerns, you needn't actually email any photos that you copy, or you can email them to yourself if you want to assure yourself, without violating the law, that images are preserved during the emailing process.)

So I just did what I've done for many years without the slightest problem. I went to a series of randomly chosen webpages with text and photos (and sometimes non-photographic images), carefully highlighted a portion of the page (making sure the photos/images were indeed “taking” the highlighting), and then pasted it all in Yahoo Mail using Firefox. 100% of the copied photos/images were precisely reproduced in Yahoo Mail (although sometimes a little smaller in size), and were preserved intact when emailed to myself. I then repeated the exact process using LibreOffice Writer (version 3.6.32) and precisely 0 % of the photos/images were reproduced there.

So, contrary to your findings: Yahoo Mail, a complete success, LibreOffice Writer, a complete failure.

Joe1234, I eagerly await your results when you attempt to replicate my experiment.

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Very well, let us repeat the experiment, this time with photographs. has photographs that may be used freely, subject to minimal restrictions (CC-BY-SA license). Entered "viaduct" in the search box. Then I selected everything from "There is a page ..." to "View (previous 20..")

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-19 20:44:22 +0100 )edit

(cont.) Ctrl+C and then Ctrl+V in Writer. Again, right clicked one photo and soon after, all 17 photos appeared in all their glory in Writer. Did not perform this experiment in Yahoo Mail also b/c did not see the point.

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-19 20:46:19 +0100 )edit

Repro in Writer/GMail: Searched for 'viaduct', but couldn't find either text listed, so I just copied a section with text, headings, and pictures. GMail and Writer preserved text, headings, and pics (small delay w/pics in Writer). Writer status bar flashed "Importing document" while pasting.

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-19 23:34:22 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-01-21 21:09:59 +0100

graviton gravatar image

Hi, everyone! It's been established over the past week that LibreOffice Writer can copy and paste web pages, including photos, drawings, and other graphics, into documents of Writer.

I, however, am unable to do that. All obvious remedies have been tried and failed. So the question is: Has LibreOffice Writer been shown to be fully compatible with Windows 8, my operating system? Or is Windows 8 in fact the reason I can only copy and paste text from web pages and not images?

So I ask anyone out there with Windows 8 like me to please, if you would be so kind, go to any web page with photos and text, and copy a chunk of it, and see if you can paste the photos successfully in LibreOffice Writer or if you only get essentially an empty box where the photo should be.

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answered 2013-01-23 07:15:50 +0100

graviton gravatar image

qubit comments:

"@graviton, I just threw a couple of windows8 tags on this question. Still asking my peers for a win8 test machine. A few of them just received new windows laptops, all of which came with win7. Wondering if this an indication that the computer companies don't trust win8 yet..."

qubit, you rock!! And I'm not the kind of person who ever says things like "You rock!", but this really warrants it. qubit, you've gone "above and beyond" but I can't even say the call of duty because you have no duty to lift a finger. In short, I fully grasp and appreciate your altruistic efforts!

As for Windows 8, God knows it has many "imperfections", to be very kind to Microsoft in choosing that word. I think any user of Win8 could launch into a multi-hour diatribe just cataloging the truly infuriating properties of the touchpad alone. It wouldn't surprise me in the least if Win8 is responsible for my problems copying web page photos/images to Writer, especially since no plausible alternative is occurring to people who know far more about LibreOffice than I.

qubit, assuming you find someone with Win8 who tries to copy web page photos and fails just like me and we therefore have pretty irrefutable proof that Win8 is the culprit, what then? Will the LibreOffice designers be notified, will they take steps to address it? Or does the problem lie with Microsoft's design of Windows 8, so that it would have to be remedied by them?

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You should be able now to comment below a comment that you are replying to. (New users have insufficient rep to comment below any Answer, an unfortunate restriction that should be lifted.) Keeping conversations in one place makes this page more legible for new readers. Thank you.

Joe1234 gravatar imageJoe1234 ( 2013-01-23 07:24:50 +0100 )edit

@Joe1234 -- Yes, I'd like to lift (or at least drastically slash) those karma hurdles. They seem to be causing more trouble than they're worth. I'm trying to suggest changes a little at a time, and see what kind of support I get.

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-23 08:36:03 +0100 )edit

@graviton, (1) Thank you for your kind words! (2) Regarding Windows 8, if we can repro your bug on another machine running the same OS then that would strongly point the finger at win8 (or perhaps at the LO code as it runs on win8!). We can file a bug, and hope that the devs can find the problem.

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-23 08:39:48 +0100 )edit

answered 2013-01-17 09:16:04 +0100

graviton gravatar image

qubit, yes, I left-click the touchpad and move the cursor to highlight the desired portion of the webpage, then press Ctrl C, and then go to the Yahoo email, click on the spot on the email I want to deposit my parcel, and press Ctrl V. Everything-- text, photos and any and all graphics--- is perfectly reproduced. It seems inconceivable to me that only lesser things would be attainable with LibreOffice Writer. But thus far, all I have are gaping holes where the photos should be!!!

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Hmm. Interesting. I assume you're using Yahoo mail in the browser (right?), so the browser successfully copies the HTML and (possibly) the images as well. Oh! perhaps that's the issue: Are the images in an email embedded or are they links? Perhaps LO just isn't displaying a image linked by url...

qubit gravatar imagequbit ( 2013-01-17 18:22:38 +0100 )edit

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Asked: 2013-01-16 23:26:42 +0100

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Last updated: Mar 24 '13