While writing some text (under Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy with OpenOffice 2.4) I wanted to insert a formula and much to my surprise the Insert -> Object -> Formula way grayed (greyed?) out. My first reaction was that this is probably because I was missing Java (or more precisely: OpenOffice didn't recognize my installation of the OpenJDK 6). So I tried to configure it, to no avail. I kept getting the error message:
no java installation was found in the given directory. Not to developers: it would be really nice to specify what file you are exactly looking for in the directory, so that I can search my HD and located the correct folder!
I solved the Java issue by installing the package
openoffice.org-java-common via apt-get, but this still didn't solve my formula problem:
sudo apt-get install openoffice.org-java-common
sudo apt-get install openoffice.org-math
This solved the problem, but begs the question, why wasn't this package installed by default? I suppose that someone (Sun? Ubuntu? Debian?) was following the Microsoft Office practice of not installing the Equation editor, but this is the one optional component I always installed when I used Microsoft Office.