A Bit of Linux-Oriented Showing Off:
I run Linux. I don't quite
qualify as fanatical about it, but somewhere on the fanatical side of dedicated.
Every machine I own has Linux on it, to some degree or another. I'll
spare the long diatribes praising every Finnish lunatic who's ever contributed
code. I like it. I don't run any Micro$oft stuff because of
it. And there are many more reasons I'm not goign to go into.
A screenshot of my desktop.
It's not an especially typical representation, since I made it for purposes
of showing off rather than accurate depiction of what it usually looks
like. Normally it contains Netscape and a ton of xterms. This
just looked better. On it we have, working clockwise from top left:
Netscape Navigator 4.04 -- can't say I'm thrilled to have to use Netscape's
products, but it's more or less a requirement in my line of work to have
a "modern" browser, and NS is a fair bit better than the other "modern"
browser lurking in the industry. Even if M$ saw fit to provide a
version of M$IE for Linux, I've seen how bloated it is on Solaris -- I'd
rather use arena, or lynx, if it came to that. The makers of Opera
have recently announced an intention to make their browser multiplatform,
including support for X, but they may be hampered by how hard it can be
to port a Windoze app to X - essentially you have to add an entire GUI abstraction
layer; also Netscape's announcement of intent to release source code may
mean the GNU project brings its considerable resources to bear there,
outstripping Opera. We'll see.
Solaris' Solstice Suite -- not a Linux app, this. I haven't gotten
over how nice it is to run programs all over the place and display them
on whatever other machines you choose. I don't like Solaris all that
much, but until Sybase or Oracle sees fit to provide a (decent) Linux
version of their database servers (Sybase has a Linux version but won't
support it; Oracle has a Linux version but wont' release it), I'm stuck
with it. The machine it's running on is coral, my company's only
non-Linux server; coral's perfmeter display is in the bottom right.
Mutt v0.88 -- My mailreader of choice. Decent features, excellent
speed, supports PGP and Maildir, regexp matching, flexible configuration,
and -- saving grace above all -- it's not pine.
WWIV -- actually, a login to my BBS. Yes, they still exist.
WWIV was a DOS-based BBS software that I got into around 1990. The
board's been up almost continuously since July 1992. For the last
year and a half it's been running on one of my Linux machines.
fvwm2 menus -- nothing much elaborate. I've tried to get into the
habit of using them to run stuff that doesn't need an xterm (X apps, IOW),
to avoid wasting RAM, but haven't done too well.
Lyn v0.8a.5L -- The CD player program I wrote. Curses-based, CDDB
database capable, X aware, etc.
top -- Fairly easy command for the novices, and the non-novices seem to
keep using it even after they get to be experts with ps. This copy
was running on Sonoma.Net's primary webserver, a dual-PPro Linux box that
serves 150 or so sites, three of them pulling a half-million or more hits
Over on the right side, the fvwm2 buttonbar. Much as a more aesthetic
rendering of a buttonbar would be nice, I've yet to find a windowmanager
with a better buttonbar for the purpose of actually doing things, as opposed
to merely looking nice and eating RAM. The mailbox program is coolmail
v1.3, with my Maildir patches; the various machine logins all have ssh-proxied
swallowed xloads associated with them. The logins themselves are
all ssh-encrypted, letting root passwords, PGP passphrases, and drippingly
erotic prose be typed without fear. I adore encryption, but that's
another issue entirely. The meters below the pager are copies of
perf(1), Sun's RPC-based system monitoring utility. It works off
of rstatd, and provides a fair amount of quite helpful data. The
Linux version of rstatd, sadly, supports fairly few of the meters.
The top meter was showing all that green (niced) CPU activity because the
machine was cracking DES keys for distributed.net.
The root window contains a fractal from Walnut Creek CDROM's "Fractal Frenzy"
CD, circa 1993. There's a tiny shell script that loads a random fractal
in the root window every 6 hours or whatever it was set at. All of
the fractals on the CD were in, at most, 1024x768, hence the graininess
when blown up to 1600x1200 (yes, it's a big monitor. Matrox Millenium
4MB on a 20" Magnavox display -- been worth its cost many times over, in
terms of more comfortable workspace and quicker movement between programs.
"Maximize" an app? Surely you jest. :))