OpenLP is presentation software developed for churches to provide a
single easy to use interface for the projection needs of a typical
worship service. First created in 2004, it has steadily grown in
features and maturity such that it is now a mainstay in hundreds of
churches around the world.
The name "OpenLP" is a contraction of "Open Source Lyrics Projection".
It is not an abbreviation. The L and the P do not stand for anything,
and the name is a single word with an uppercase O, an uppercase L and an
uppercase P. It is not "Openlp", "Open LP" or "OpenLp", or even "Open
Lp". That said, it is pronounced, "open el pea".
OpenLP has searchable databases of songs and Bible verses allowing them
to be projected instantly or saved in a pre-prepared order of service
file. Themes allow for a variety of presentation options and allow you
to add attractive visuals to enhance your presentations. PowerPoint and
videos and audio files can be run from within the program removing the
need to switch between different programs. Alert messages can be
displayed so the nursery or car park stewards can notify the
congregation easily. Remote capability allows the worship leader to
change songs, or for alert messages to be sent from anywhere on the
network, even via a smart phone or tablet.
Being free, this software can be installed on as many PCs as required,
including the home PCs of worship leader(s) at no additional cost.
Compared to the expensive site licenses and restrictions of commercial
software we believe OpenLP is the perfect choice for quality and value.
Still in active development by a growing team of enthusiastic
developers, features are being added all the time resulting in continual
improvement of the software.
OpenLP is licensed under the GNU General Public License, which means
that it is free to use, distribute, modify, and it stays free.
Can I help with OpenLP?
OpenLP is possible because of the commitment of individuals. If you
would like to help there are several things that you can get involved
with. Please see: openlp.org/contribute
I use and like OpenLP and would like to tell others online. Where can I do this?
If you have a website or blog, then link to our site
http://www.openlp.org with a few words saying what the software is
and why you like it.
Add a placemark on our Worldwide Usage
so others in your locality can see someone close by is using it
If you are a member of any Christian Forums or websites, and their
rules allow it, then perhaps review the software or ask others to
What operating systems does OpenLP support?
OpenLP is designed to be cross platform. Currently it has been known to
run on Windows (7, 8, 10), Linux (Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Xubuntu, Fedora, Arch
Linux, OpenSUSE, Debian), FreeBSD & Mac OSX. Please let us
know if you've successfully run it on
Which programming language is 2.x developed in?
OpenLP 2.x is written in Python and uses the
Qt5 toolkit. Both are cross-platform which allows
the software to run on different types of computers and so allow more
people access to free worship software. Python is one of the easier
programming languages to learn, so this helps us develop and find
bugs quicker, and also allows more developers to
contribute with the project.
Which written languages does OpenLP support?
We have support for a number languages which can be seen on the
Settings->Translate menu. However some of these translations are
incomplete. If you would like to help complete or start to translate
OpenLP into your language then see the Getting started
Why are there black bars down the sides of my themes?
In short, you are looking at a generated preview thumbnail, not a true
representation of your theme, and those "black bars" is actually just
the background behind the image.
Thumbnails, not themes
When OpenLP creates the theme, it creates a thumbnail preview of the
theme too, and this is what you are actually looking at. Themes
themselves are dynamic, and will adapt as best as they can to the size
of the projector. However, OpenLP does not stretch images, and so if
your projector's output is wider than your theme's background image, you
will still see the black background on either side.
Using the projector for accuracy
It is strongly recommended that you set up OpenLP with your projector
attached. This way you can make sure you have the most accurate set up,
one which should be the same when you actually use OpenLP in your church
Is there a manual or any documentation for 2.x?
You can find the latest version of this manual at
http://manual.openlp.org/. An offline manual is also shipped with
OpenLP on the Windows and Mac platforms. If you need help, use the live
chat feature or ask in the forums. If you would like to help write the
manual, please let us know - we are always happy for new volunteers to
join the team and contribute to the
I've started OpenLP, but I can't see the songs or bibles section in the Media Manager
When you installed OpenLP, the first time wizard would have asked which
plugins you wanted, and songs and bibles should have been selected. If
for some reason they were not, then you will need to activate them
yourself. See http://manual.openlp.org/plugin_list.html for
What are these plugins that I keep seeing mentioned?
The plugins allow OpenLP to be extended easily. A number have been
written (Songs, Bibles, Presentations) etc. but it is possible for the
application to be extended with the functionality only you require. If
this is the case then go for it but let us know as we can help and it
may be something someone else wants.
How do I enable Powerpoint/Impress/Powerpoint Viewer?
First of all ensure that the presentation plugin is enabled (see above).
Then to enable a presentation application, go to the Settings dialog,
switch to the Presentations tab and check one of the enabled
checkboxes. OpenLP will automatically detect which of the three you have
installed, and enable the appropriate checkbox(es). Check the
applications you require, and then restart OpenLP for the change to be
detected. Note, PowerPoint Viewer 2010 is not yet supported, use 2003 or
Why is there no presentations plugin available on OS X?
Currently the presentations plugin is not bundled with OpenLP on OS X.
The reason for that is that the LibreOffice/OpenOffice.org version on
Mac OS X does not contain the (more exact: does only contain a broken)
interoperability component (the so called pyuno bridge) which could be
used by OpenLP. As soon as the interoperability component works on OS X
we can re-enable the plugin and bundle it. We are really sorry for that.
Is it possible to get Bible x? How?
The Bible plugin has a much improved Import Wizard which can import
Bibles from a variety of sources. The following sources are supported:
Translations from the Sword
Project can be
converted using the mod2osis tool)
Why do my Bible verses take a long time to load when using a Web Bible?
In order to better conform to copyright law, the Web Download Bibles are
not downloaded when you import them, but on the fly as you search for
them. As a result, the search takes a little longer if you need to
download those particular verses. Having said that, the Web Download
Bibles cache downloaded verses so that you don't need to download them
My Bible is on the Web Download sites, but my Church isn't on the internet. What options do I have?
When you create and save a service, all the items in the service are
saved with it. That means any images, presentations, songs and media
items are saved. This is also true for bibles. What this means is you
can create the service on your home computer, insert a bible passage
from the web, save it and then open the service using your church
computer and voila, the bible passage should be there! Note this can
also be done with songs, etc!
I've imported the wrong Bible, how do I delete it?
There is a delete button on the toolbar on the Bible's Media Manager
panel. Note this may move into the meta data editor in later versions to
reduce the risk of accidental deletion.
On Windows, OpenLP does not use a configuration file, it uses the
Windows registry. You can find the settings here:
To edit the settings, click on Start, Run, type in "regedit.exe" and
press Enter. Navigate down the tree to the OpenLP
(Advanced) Using MySQL or PostgreSQL to store songs
Please Note: MySQL and PostgreSQL are not meant to
be used over the Internet. Not only is this insecure, but your
connection will be excruciatingly slow, and will cause OpenLP to
It is possible to use MySQL or PostgreSQL to store the songs so that you
can share them across a network. Currently you can only do this by
manually editing the OpenLP settings.
You need to change the database type from sqlite to
mysql+mysqlconnector or postgresql. There are 4 additional values
you need to add to the settings as well.
Once you have done this (as per the setup steps for your operating
system below), run OpenLP. This will create the tables automatically.
You can import your existing songs, via the File -> Import -> Songs
-> OpenLP v2 option. The location of the songs.sqlite database is
documented elsewhere in this FAQ.
On Windows, create a text file containing the following snippet, putting
your own settings where applicable. Rename the file so it ends in .reg,
and then double click the file to load it into the registry.
In the OpenLP configuration
find the [songs] section, and edit the db type value, setting it to
your desired database type (as per above). Then add the 4 extra values.
At the end of all of this, your values should look like this:
db type = mysql+mysqlconnector db username = username db password = password db hostname = server db database = database_name
Mac OS X
In the OpenLP property
file, find the songs.db type property, and change it to your desired database type. Then add 4
more properties, and set them each to their correct values. At the end
of the day you should have a set of properties that looks something like
songs.db type = mysql+mysqlconnector songs.db username = username songs.db password = password songs.db hostname = server songs.db database = database_name
You can also set these settings via the following terminal
From version 3.5, it appears that LibreOffice now comes with a Presenter
View. This is very useful if using Impress on its own. However when
using with OpenLP it can be in the way. It doesn't appear possible to
disable this within LibreOffice/Impress itself, and as it is installed
as part of LibreOffice it cannot be disabled in the Extension Manager.
To disable this in Windows, it will be necessary to go into the Windows
Add/Remove Program and choose to "Change" LibreOffice. Select the
"Modify" option in the installer that appears. In the Custom setup,
expand "Optional Components" , "Extensions" and select "Presenter
Screen". In the dropdown box on the left, choose the "This feature will
not be available" option. Then step through the installer wizard, and
the option will be disabled.
On other operating systems it may be possible to remove this via your
package manager. If all else fails, check the installation folder for
LibreOffice, and in the "share\extensions" folder, try removing the
Open http://pastebin.com/ in your browser and copy and paste the
contents of the log file into the web page
Click the submit button at the bottom of the page
Copy the URL (address) of the new page and have it handy when you
enter the IRC channel
I See a Bug Window (with an Oops Message)
It looks like you have found an error in the program (what we call a
bug). You should report this to us so that OpenLP can be improved.
Before reporting any bugs please first make sure that there isn't
already a bug report about your problem:
If there is already a bug report, you may be able to help by
providing further information. However, if no one else has reported
it yet, then please post a new bug report.
Send unreported bugs via e-mail to bugs (at) openlp.org - this way
we can determine the cause of the bug, and assign it the appropriate
You can also file the bug on our bugs
list on Launchpad, though we
prefer you to use the above method.
We are moving away from reporting bugs on the forums, so please
rather use one of the above options.
What information should I include in a bug report?
Distribution - Ubuntu, Fedora, etc (if you're using Linux)
Edition - Home, Basic, Business, etc (if you're using Windows)
Version of OpenLP (Help -> About)
The exact steps to take in order to reproduce the error
Version of MS Office or OpenOffice (if you're using the song imports
or the presentation plugin)
What Bible translation and type you are importing (if you're using
the Bible importer)
Any other information that might remotely be related or useful.
The more information you give us, the better we can help you.
I've been asked to email a debug log, where do I find this?
We may need a debug log to help pin-point the issue. A new log file is
created each time you start OpenLP so copy the file before you run the
software a second time. On Windows a Debug option is available in the
start menu. On other systems, you will need to run OpenLP from the
command line, with the following option: -l debug. Please note, that
is a lowercase L.
If you aren't sending it to the support team, then please do not paste
the log contents straight into a forum post. Instead, open the log file
in a text editor (such as notepad on Windows or gedit on Ubuntu) and
copy and paste the contents into somewhere like
1. Then give us the link to the page that is
Find the OpenLP folder in your Start menu. Choose the "OpenLP
OpenLP will start up. Go to the Tools -> Open Data Folder menu
Windows Explorer will appear containing folders such as "alerts,"
"bibles," "custom," etc. Keep this Explorer window open.
Now repeat the steps you need to take in OpenLP to reproduce the
problem you had
Close down OpenLP.
In Windows Explorer, which you left open, navigate up one level into
the "openlp" folder. You will see the openlp.log file. This is the
file to e-mail.
If OpenLP Doesn't Start Properly on Windows
Note, if OpenLP doesn't start and you can't get to the Tools menu, you
can find the log file by following the directions below:
Pressing the Windows Key and "R" at the same time
Type the following into the Run dialog, and press :
If you installed OpenLP from a package:
@:~$ openlp -l debug
Alternately, if you're running OpenLP from source:
@:~$ ./openlp.pyw -l debug
If your Linux distribution supports the XDG standard, you'll find the
Otherwise, you'll find the log file in:
Mac OS X
Open Terminal.app and navigate to where you installed OpenLP, usually
@:~$ cd /Applications
Then go into the OpenLP.app directory, down to the OpenLP executable:
@:~$ cd OpenLP.app/Contents/MacOS
And then run OpenLP in debug mode:
@:~$ ./OpenLP -l debug
Once you've done that, you need to get the log file. In your home
directory, open the Library directory, and the Application Support
directory within that. Then open the openlp directory, and you should
find the openlp.log file in that
PowerPoint is enabled and loads, but won't open or create thumbnails when adding PPTs
This has been known to happen when the PowerPoint installation is broken
or incomplete. Possible solutions:
Go to Add and Remove Programs in the Control Panel, find Microsoft
Office and select "Change"
First choose to "Repair" and step through the wizard.
If this doesn't fix it, again "Change" but this time choose "Add or
Find "Microsoft PowerPoint" and ensure all options underneath are
set to "Run from My Computer"
Do the same for all the options under "Office Shared Features" and
Continue through the wizard.
The command line shows many error messages
When running OpenLP from the command line, you might get something like
Logging to: /home//.config/openlp/openlp.log WARNING: bool Phonon::FactoryPrivate::createBackend() phonon backend plugin could not be loaded WARNING: bool Phonon::FactoryPrivate::createBackend() phonon backend plugin could not be loaded WARNING: Phonon::createPath: Cannot connect Phonon::MediaObject ( no objectName ) to VideoDisplay ( no objectName ). WARNING: Phonon::createPath: Cannot connect Phonon::MediaObject ( no objectName ) to Phonon::AudioOutput ( no objectName ). WARNING: bool Phonon::FactoryPrivate::createBackend() phonon backend plugin could not be loaded
These error messages indicate that you need to install an appropriate
backend for Phonon.
If you're using Gnome, you need to install the GStreamer backend for
Phonon. On Ubuntu you would install the phonon-backend-gstreamer
If you're using KDE, you need to install the Xine backend for Phonon. On
Kubuntu you would install the phonon-backend-xine package:
@:~$ sudo aptitude install phonon-backend-xine
If you know which audiovisual system you're using, then install the
phonon-backend-vlc may also be worth trying on some systems.
Windows & Mac OS X
Phonon should already be set up properly. If you're still having issues,
let the developers know. However we recommend using VLC for playing
videos on Windows.
There are no menu icons in OpenLP
This may affect (only) linux users with xfce. To solve the problem,
follow the description
MP3's and other audio formats don't work
This is a known issue on some systems. Installing
VLC and enabling this player in Settings
-> Configure OpenLP -> Media should allow to play these.
Note however that VLC is not yet used for background audio on songs,
there is no workaround for this yet. However installing OpenOffice has
been known to fix the problem for one user. We don't know why!
Videos can be slow or pixelated. Background Videos are very slow
If playing video by themselves, try installing
VLC, and selecting this player in
Settings -> Configure OpenLP -> Media. If VLC isn't an option, then
selecting Phonon might help instead.
As for text over video, we have no solution for speeding these up.
Reducing the monitor resolution and avoiding shadows and outline text
will help. We are hoping a future release of the toolkit we are using
(QtWebKit) will help improve this, but there is no timeframe at present.
What new features will I find in v2.1.x?
Take a look at the Complete list for a
list of features added in this and previous releases.
I have a great idea for a new feature, where should I suggest it?
First of all check it isn't on the Feature
Requests page. If it is, then you need to
say no more, it's already been suggested! If it isn't on the list, then
head to the development
forum and post the