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LibreOffice has been my office suite of choice for a very long time. And it's not just because it's readily available to the Linux operating system. LibreOffice offers tons of features, is compatible with MS Office documents, and rarely causes me the slightest headache.
The only thing you'll need for this is LibreOffice installed on your desktop or laptop. The password protection feature is built into LibreOffice, so there's nothing extra to install and it doesn't matter what operating system you use. I'll demonstrate this with LibreOffice 220.127.116.11. Although the feature has been around for some time, I would highly recommend you update LibreOffice to the latest version so all vulnerabilities are patched and you have access to any new features that have been added.
Once you have LibreOffice installed or upgraded, you're ready to test-drive the password protection feature. Let's see how it works.
How to password-protect a document with LibreOffice
1. Create a new document
Although you can password-protect any document, I would suggest trying it first with a new document so you can be certain the feature works as expected. You don't want to experiment with requiring a password for an existing file and then not be able to access it later.
With that in mind, open LibreOffice and create a new text document.
2. Save your document
Before you bother to type anything into the document, save it by clicking File > Save As. At the bottom left corner of the Save As window, click the checkbox for Save With Password. Give the file a name and then click Save at the top right of the window.
3. Add a password
After clicking Save, you'll be prompted to type and verify the password for the document. Make sure to use a strong password, not a weak password that's easy to guess. (And make sure you'll remember it!) After adding the password, click OK. Save the document again and close it.
4. If desired, choose option for file-sharing password
In that same window, you can expand the Options section and set a read-only password for file sharing.
The next time you go to open the file, you'll be prompted to type the password. Unless you type the correct password, the file will not open. (So don't forget the password.) You can also password-protect a file on a shared drive and anyone who attempts to open it will also have to type the password.