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Recently I attempted to add the pricing in a column when I discovered OpenOffice sum function not working- it is a bug in OpenOffice Calc. If you can’t get the SUM function to work, try this easy find and replace fix.

OpenOffice sum function not working?

Check for the Sum Function Error

First, click on one of your numbers in the column you’d like to add. You will probably notice here is an invisible apostrophe ( ‘ ) in front of the number like this: ‘128.22. This is a glitch/error in OpenOffice Calc. It’s practically invisible until you click an individual cell with a number in it. The problem occurs when you right click the cells and change the formatting of the cells from text to currency or number.

Find & Replace to fix OpenOffice Sum Function Error

OpenOffice Sum Function not working? Find ^. and Replace with & to fix it!

How to Fix with Find & Replace

The only solution I’ve found is to use find and replace to remove the invisible apostrophe.

  1. In Calc, go to Edit –> Find & Replace (or use CTRL+F)
  2. Search for: ^.
    (Note: you have to search for the caret symbol and a period (^.), not an apostrophe. Weird, I know… but trust me.)
  3. Replace with: &
  4. Click the “More Options” Button
  5. Check the box next to “Regular expressions”
  6. Go back to the top area and click the “Replace All” button

After that you’ll find your numbers are really numbers and that there’s no apostrophe ‘ in front of them. If you’ve attempted to use the SUM function already it will probably populate with your total immediately after you do this.

Final Thoughts About OpenOffice Calc

OpenOffice Calc is a great free tool, but it comes with it’s share of glitches. Luckily the sum function not working will no longer be one you’ll have to worry about! Know of any more bugs or errors in OpenOffice? We can investigate how to fix them for you.