I found Igor through Steven Rosenberg, and like Steven says, Igor is both knowledgeable and funny. Igor’s setup is cool because of the variety of hardware and distros he uses. I was most interested in the variety of desktop environments he uses. I find it tough enough flipping between GNOME3 and Windows 7. I’m not sure I’d be able to handle even just a third variable.
- Who are you, and what do you do?
My name is Igor Ljubuncic, I’m a Linux nerd, writer and a former physicist. I do a lot of things, but work-wise, I lead a team of people creating new, innovative solutions for high-performance Linux computing environments in a big company, which shall remain unnamed. It comes down to complex problem solving, optimization of operating system images, tons of bug-finding, and other neat stuff. Other than that, I really love writing books. In fact, the second book in my epic fantasy series The Lost Words is due any day now.
Ed. note:: It’s been released.
- Why do you use Linux?
At home, I use Linux primarily for video editing and automation of tasks, and lots and lots of testing. Linux is a fairly flexible operating system, and you truly get to appreciate the power and simplicity once you start digging under the surface. That said, I also happily use other, proprietary operating systems.
- What distribution do you run on your main desktop/laptop?
That’s a tough question, because I do not use any one machine for all tasks; rather, my machines have dedicated tasks based on their hardware, portability, and expendability. My desktop rigs run Kubuntu. Then, I have numerous laptops running Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Linux Mint, and CentOS, as well as many other test distros.
- What desktop environment do you use and why do you use it?
I still think GNOME 2 was, and maybe still is, the most productive desktop environment. That said, I really like Cinnamon and the latest incarnations of Xfce. Then again, KDE is also very nice, and MATE isn’t bad either. But if I absolutely had to choose one, then it would be a really tough choice.
- What one piece of software do you depend upon with this distribution? Why is it so important?
I do not think there’s any software I use that is specifically restricted to this or that distribution. There are several important and useful programs that I sort of must have, but they run on all of these systems, so it’s no biggie. I also require several Windows-only applications, plus games, which is why Windows is still so prevalent in my setup.
- What kind of hardware do you run this setup on?
If this is the part where one brags about how nerdy they are, then we have the following:
- Desktop rig: custom built, i5 processor, 16GB RAM, Nvidia GTX570 card, five hard disks, running Kubuntu Pangolin and Windows 7 in a dual-boot configuration.
- Desktop rig: custom built, i3, 16GB RAM, Nvidia GTX 550TI card, three hard disks, running the same setup as above.
- One HP Pavilion laptop, with 4GB RAM and Nvidia card, running Lucid (still) and Windows 7 on the internal disk, and five distros on the external one, although I spend most of the time using Pangolin.
- One LG laptop, with 4GB RAM and Nvidia card, currently with CentOS and several other distros in the process of being upgraded.
- One Lenovo T61 laptop with 2GB RAM and Intel graphics, booting Ubuntu 12.04, Kubuntu 12.04, Linux Mint Maya, and an ever-changing fourth candidate.
- One T42 laptop, with a 32-bit processor, 1.5GB RAM and ATI graphics, in the process of being upgraded.
- One Asus eeePC netbook running Xubuntu Pangolin.
- One Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet with Android Jelly Bean
- One dedicated server machine for virtualization.
- I also have three other laptops running Windows exclusively, plus several devices on loan for testing and such.
- Will you share a screenshot of your desktop?
Which one? But here’s a sampling.
Interview conducted May 7, 2013