Bug 132736 - FileOpen / FileSave default directory in native dialogs on MS Windows
Summary: FileOpen / FileSave default directory in native dialogs on MS Windows
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: LibreOffice (show other bugs)
(earliest affected) release
Hardware: All Windows (All)
: medium normal
Assignee: Not Assigned
Depends on:
Reported: 2020-05-05 18:18 UTC by Ferry Toth
Modified: 2021-11-25 15:04 UTC (History)
7 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:


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Description Ferry Toth 2020-05-05 18:18:05 UTC
Super irritating: when you have a document open in LibO and you want to use Save As or when you want to generate a pdf the file dialog opens in a directory you used yesterday.

This happens only with the Windows native dialogs. 

The KDE and MacOS dialogs understand that the most logical place to Save As is the directory the respective document is located. Same for creating a pdf: where else than in the same directory as the original.

And guess what, when working on a document what would be the most logical directory when you click File Open? Right, the same directory again.

I think it would be fair to say that the correct and most useful behavior (as already acknowledged in the KDE and MacOS versions) should be present in the Windows native dialogs version as well.

Note: on windows the alternative Libreoffice dialogs do have the correct behavior, but these dialogs lack usability (long paths unreadable / don't fit in the dialog) and look weird and unfamiliar.
Comment 1 V Stuart Foote 2020-05-05 19:07:14 UTC
IIUC this is now intentional as fixed in see also bug 34303, but related behavior as in bug 129886 (which I guess is a duplicate of this).
Comment 2 Ferry Toth 2020-05-05 21:12:55 UTC
bug 34303 suggests as a workaround to use LibO dialogs. And the fix relates to PDF export macro's. However, the problem is both with File Open, Save As, PDF export dialog.

In fact the original report was marked enhancement, then changed to bug.

And on the most used platform a most annoying one that bug users will encounter every day.

The correct behavior as expected by anybody working on more then 1 document at a time is as in the KDE / MAcOS (didn't try gtk) version, the default directory should be the directory the active document is located, and not a recent directory, or a directory used yesterday.

But I just tested on the latest and greatest

I created in My Documents directory 1 with document1 and directory 2 with document2.
I can confirm that with document 1 active, Save As, PDF export, Save Copy with use directory 1 as default, while  with document 2 active, Save As, PDF export, Save Copy with use directory 2 as default. That is great!

However, with either document 1 or 2 active File Open will always use directory 2 as default. Meh. How hard can it be?. BTW on KDE this will open a directory I used yesterday, so crazy on that platform as well.

Also, Insert Picture uses as default: C:\Users\ferry\AppData\Roaming\LibreOffice\4\user\gallery. 

Really? When you are working on a document would you have all the pictures you want to insert in your working directory, or would you go through the trouble to copy them over to the gallery first? And then on KDE in this case it opens a folder I used a year ago or so. Wow.

So I would say the issue is half fixed in, I will inform my users on windows to upgrade. But the other half is still inconsistent and annoying. Should I change the bug title to File Open / Insert Picture and mark confirmed?
Comment 3 Ferry Toth 2020-05-07 14:43:28 UTC
I found another File Save dialog (in linux):

When you have a writer document with an embedded draw object, you can save a copy of the embedded draw object. De default directory is /home/user.

Expected: the documents working directory.
Comment 4 Buovjaga 2020-08-27 16:10:31 UTC
Ferry: do you agree to close this as duplicate of bug 129886?
Comment 5 Ferry Toth 2020-08-27 20:57:21 UTC
I think this bug report covers more cases: File Open, Save As, PDF export, Insert Picture, save embedded draw object.

So, if you ask me, then no. In fact I would like to see it's status changed to confirmed.
Comment 6 Xisco Faulí 2021-11-23 10:51:42 UTC
Hello Ferry,
Could you please try to reproduce it with the latest version of LibreOffice from https://www.libreoffice.org/download/libreoffice-fresh/ ?
I have set the bug's status to 'NEEDINFO'. Please change it back to 'UNCONFIRMED' if the bug is still present in the latest version.
Comment 7 Ferry Toth 2021-11-25 15:04:59 UTC
Tested with on Windows with Windows dialog boxes.
With 2 documents open SaveAs and ExportAsPDF dialogs seem to follow the odt document path as expected.

Saving a new previously unsaved document goes to "My Documents", which me is unlogical when I am already working on a document in a certain location.

When opening a new document it seems to use the last opened path as default, instead of the path of the current document. So when opening A, the B, then activating A, FileOpen will use directory of B.

Why is this annoying? When you are opening documents in response to phone calls each document related to a project in their own working folder. When returning to finish the document, open new ones or save them you want to return to the respective project folder.

It's like working on 2 separate projects simultaneously (an I sometimes have 10 documents or more open) and LibO always guesses the working folder wrong.