Openoffice is the only way to do word processing etc in linux. If you find something that microsoft office does that open office can't then I would be amazed. It is designed along pritty similar design to the major windows bassed word processing packages and so the transition is relatively easy. You can also get open office for a variety of different platforms - my brother uses it on his windows machine quite merily. The export as pdf function is particularly useful. I've not had much experience of using the spred sheet or slide presentation parts of it yet - will let you know what they are like when I find a reason to use them.
Start up comand for the wordprocessor $ oowriter2