ProjectLibre is an open source project management tool that’s touted as the #1 alternative to Microsoft Project. It’s widely compatible and free to use, but it can also be complex to set up and start using. If you’re thinking about adopting ProjectLibre as your project management software, consider the following pros and cons when comparing it with other solutions.
- ProjectLibre pros
- ProjectLibre cons
- Compare ProjectLibre with other project management tools
You should keep in mind the features that are most important to you when searching for project management software. If you need a solution that’s widely compatible or budget-friendly, ProjectLibre might be the right choice for you.
ProjectLibre was designed as an open source platform, so it’s compatible with Linux-based operating systems in addition to Windows and macOS devices. This is a distinct advantage, especially compared to other native apps that don’t support Linux distributions, including Microsoft Project. This also means you can use ProjectLibre to open Microsoft Project files across any of your devices.
Additionally, ProjectLibre has been translated into 29 languages. This is an extremely useful feature for accessibility as well as internationally-based businesses. However, the translations are not always accurate, and some users have noted that they can be somewhat strange.
Another huge benefit of ProjectLibre’s platform is its low cost. The ProjectLibre Open Source option is completely free to download and start using, and the company has announced a low cost ProjectLibre that will be available imminently. The Cloud version seeks to address some of the limitations of the Open Source version, namely multi-project management and team-wide collaboration.
News of ProjectLibre has circulated for several years, and admins announced in a recent blog post that they have begun a phased beta program for corporate and university accounts. For now, the Open Source edition of ProjectLibre is an ideal solution if you have a small number of users and the patience to learn how to use it.
As with most prospective business tools, there are some drawbacks to consider before you make your choice. If you need a tool that’s easy to use or offers dedicated support channels, ProjectLibre might not be the best fit.
A common challenge with open source tools is the learning curve that comes with implementing them. The ProjectLibre user experience isn’t the most straightforward, and many users have commented that it can take some time to learn how to use the software. One of ProjectLibre’s primary goals is to offer a large number of customizable tools that can fit a user’s unique needs, but this often comes at the expense of user experience.
Furthermore, ProjectLibre’s user interface hasn’t seen a facelift in several years. While this might seem like a superficial complaint, a well-designed user interface can make a significant impact on the application’s user experience. Many alternative tools that have a cleaner design also include more advanced features, so you should look for a more fully-functional project manager if you have complex needs.
Another challenge of using ProjectLibre is the lack of customer support that’s available to users. There are no formal ProjectLibre representatives you can call, email, or chat with to resolve an issue. There are several demo videos available to watch and how-to guides to read, but these may be ineffective or inefficient if you have a specific problem you need to address.
ProjectLibre also maintains a robust community of users who contribute to forums and user groups across the globe. In theory this is an immensely valuable resource for open source projects of all types, but the ProjectLibre discussion boards are frequently disabled because of spam and unauthorized advertising. It’s probably worth exploring other project management tools if you have limited technical expertise and don’t want to teach yourself how to navigate the ProjectLibre interface.
ProjectLibre’s mission is to replace the “bloated, expensive, and complex architecture” of Microsoft Project with a free, open source project management software. This tool is great if you have a small budget but a lot of time to learn the complex interface. However, if you have less time to familiarize yourself with ProjectLibre but more money to invest in a project management platform, it might be best to look for an alternative solution.
Related: Project-Management.com’s list of Best Project Management Software for 2021
This article was updated May 2021 by Kaiti Norton.