No, I am not aware of any other software that will read .pps files. OpeOffice should not lock up your machine. Many other VL users are running OO without lock-ups under both SOHO and Standard. Where did you get the OO package from? Please run "soffice" in a terminal and post back any error messages you see in the terminal.
With a 600MHz Pentium III running on 256MB of RAM, OpenOffice is just too resource-hungry for my machine. I used the one that came on the Vector Standard .iso, but that's another issue. Abiword works just fine and have had no issues with it.
I thought there might be something else out there out there in Gslapt, but if not, then I'll just have to use my Windows machine to download it.
I appreciate the help, thanks.