Collabora vs. Onlyoffice

Is there a general recommendation from nextcloud which online office should be used preferable?

Collabora or OnlyOffice?

best regards



no recommendation here…

but the so-called “nextcloud-office” should be built-in from NC23.0.+ on

1 Like

Hi @kaisa-pg

While Collabora is based on Libreoffice, OnlyOffice is a independently developed product by Ascensio System. They have made Microsoft Office compatibility a priority for their product. The UI is similar to MS Office and the default file format is docx. It must be said, however, that the MS Office compatibility is good, but not perfect in both products. In the end, it mainly depends on preference. Actually, the following points are more important.

  1. If it is in any way possible, I highly recommend using a separate Docker container, regardless of whether product you want to use. The built-in server apps perform worse and have or had various other issues.

  2. If you decide to or have to use one of the built-in server apps for some reason, I would clearly recommend Collabora. The issues with it are or were limited to performance and that it sometimes doesn’t start, while the Built-In OnlyOffice Server also had more serious issues such as not reliably saving changes in documents. Also, Collabora is now again the primary or “default” document server in Nextcloud and gives you the Nextcloud Office interface which I find nice. :slight_smile:

I agree that if possible, you should set up a separate Docker container or perhaps sign up for a subscription plan for Collabora or Onlyoffice document server (e.g or

We have tested both Collabora and Onlyoffice and prefer Onlyoffice. Onlyoffice interface feels more modern and the default file format docx/xlsx is a big advantage.

(Note, If you install the free Onlyoffice document server community edition, mobile editing has been removed.)

I prefer Collabora. Nextcloud launched Nextcloud office which is based on Collabora and we work together with Collabora to improve the product. I like it a lot because the performance is good and the design is very fresh and clean, and it is also open source. The close collaboration between Nextcloud and Collabora means you can expect nice improvements over time.


Is Collabora still only server side? In the past the product was much slower than OO.

Although you probably already know that: It’s worth noting that the nextcloud serveradmin can choose whether ODF or OOXML is used by default for new document files in collabora online. This does not change the fact that both are editable and also creatable though. The team behind CollaboraOnline is currently investing heavily into more modern and streamlined UI. And already now the Collabora Online hoster can decide whether to use the “classic” UI or a tabbed style layout, similar to what is possible in LibreOffice for a while now.

Regarding @kevdog 's remark: Yes Collabora Online is still serverside, but improved performance tremendously during the past year or so. This of course comes down also to the implementation of the service. The Version one can download within Nextcloud directly from the “Apps” section is a lot slower than what is possible if it was hosted externally.

The “server-only” approach has other advantages too, particularly regarding the implicit transfer of documents between clients. While in client-side implementations the document has to be transfered to everyone viewing or editing the document, in Collabora Online, the document stays within the server at all times, while only a view of it is “streamed” to the editors/viewers.

Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages of course. So it’s nice to have either option.


I’ve tried both suites. We use it for multiple NC installations.
The Office suite is on a separate server (Debian 11, docker).
Collarbora needs to be installed per NC installation, and has limits for logged-in users.
OnlyOffice works for all NC installs. But the ‘secret’ is shared. But that could be altered I think.
Our clients are most small or individuals. Therefore OnlyOffice is most relevant in my opinion.
On the same server we have STUN/TURN/TURN made available. That works and is at low-cost for our clients.

Interesting, I did not know about limits on Collabora concurrent users.

Not true. You can use the same Collabora instance with multiple Nextcloud instances. But yes there is a user limit in the free CODE. server. I don’t know for how many users from the top of my head, but you can buy subscriptions for 17€ per user per year.

While this is true, Onlyoffice community edition has no mobile edit and a limit for 20 concurent connections. If you want to have all the features and / or more connections you have to buy the Enterprise Edition. Three is also a Home server variant with mobile edit enabled, but it allows only 10 concurent users.


No recommendation. But you can test Collabora Online 60 minutes with the test accounts on and after create demo user at . Password is “demo”. Server used: .

1 Like

OK thanks
So for the nextcloud office I still need collabory as a backend server or?
It does not use its own special “nextcloud office” ?

Yep. Either the Collabora Docker Container or the Built-in CODE server

Thank you very much

On my NC installation for a small business I use now “Nextcloud Office” (built in collabora) for occasional use. Before I used Collabora in an own Docker container, and that was more annoying to maintain. I would first try “Nextcloud Office” and see how it works.

Most critical thing to test: If and when changes in documents are saved to Nextcloud(!) and synced by Nextcloud.
In Nextcloud Office (Collabora) it works like this, that changes are saved automatically in the document server, but you have to press the “save” button to save a new version to nextcloud, which is then also synced to other clients.

I tried OnlyOffice some time ago, but could not get it running so that documents are saved to the Nextcloud Server and synced in a reliable way (it is really bad when you have one document version when editing “in the browser”, but a different version synced locally.
That is also important for backups, if the current status is not written as a new file in nextcloud (but just stays in the database or ram of the document server app) then there is a problem.

In general I strongly prefer Libreoffice (locally installed) and edit files there, instead of in the browser. The browser editors are ok for occasional use and if several people work on the same document at the same time.