The OpenOffice.org Mac Porting team has released a third pre-beta build of the Aqua version of the open-source productivity suite for Mac OS X.

The new release ushers in a vast range of improvements and fixes for the in-development software, hinting that final release is just a few steps away.

The developers are warning users that this snapshot is a pre-beta release and isn't yet suitable for any essential work, as the software's still liable to crashes and data loss.

"A backup of all documents used in OpenOffice.org Aqua is recommended. TimeMachine supplied with Leopard is ideal for this," the developers state.

Final release of native software is closing in. The developers say OpenOffice.org 2.4.x will be the last release for an X11 version on OpenOffice.org.