People of openSUSE: Masim Sugianto

21. Mar 2008 | News Team | No License

Today’s ‘People of openSUSE’ interviews Masim ‘Vavai’ Sugianto - founder of the Indonesian openSUSE community helping users, and spreading out openSUSE to be widely used in his country!

**Nickname:** Vavai
**Homepage: ** [//](//, [//](//
**Blog:** [//](//
**Favorite season:** I live in a tropical country, Indonesia that only has two seasons, dry season and rainy season. I love the dry season with bright sunshine and rare rain...There is a joke about the seasons in Indonesia. Indonesia is known as a country with so many season, ie : durian season, mango season, married season and much more :-)
**Motto:** Easy Going Lifestyle

Please introduce yourself!

I’m an Indonesian, 32 years old, born and live in Bekasi-West Java, a small town near Jakarta - main city of Indonesia - since 17 May 1976. I married with my beloved Renny Dear Yuniastuty and a child named Muhammad “Zeze Vavai” Rivai Alifianto.

I’m a happy blogger. I have about 7 blogs :-) . I’m currently working as an IT guy in East Jakarta.

Tell us about the background to your computer use.

I was too late when I started using computers. It’s a major problem in a third-world country just like Indonesia. I started applying DOS and Windows 95 in 1995, when I was a high school student. I heard about openSUSE for the first time in 1999, I don’t know what version it was. It’s seemed very funny and I didn’t think that it would be used at work :-) . Indonesia just likes a heaven for Microsoft product :-D (early 2000).

When and why did you start using openSUSE/SUSE Linux?

I started with SUSE Professional 9.3. I was falling in love with the wallpaper: Geeko, sat down beside the river. I used SUSE 9.3 as my computer at work and on daily use.

When did you join the openSUSE community and what made you do that?

I joined the openSUSE community since its launch with the openSUSE brand name (it was 10.0). While 10.0 launched, I had a new job in current position and my first project was Windows to Linux migration. I tried so many distros just like anyone started using Linux but in the end, I had only 3 distros that fit within the requirement of my IBM E Series server. The distros were openSUSE/SLES, CentOS and Red Hat. I’ve been using Red Hat 9 but not really liked the desktop style, Centos seems to be like it, so I chose openSUSE as server OS. From that point, I focused on openSUSE till now.

In what way do you participate in the openSUSE project?

In fact, I just have a small contribution to the community. I initiated and built up a project, Indonesian openSUSE community in the end of July 2007. I prepared the website / blog, create and maintain the forum, mailing list, distributing free CD, promoting openSUSE, hold a seminar or introduction event about openSUSE. I just need about 1 week to work alone, because a week after the project launched, there is a number of contributors helped me in various area.

The last 3 features provided by openSUSE-ID are : online support team, planet aggregator and free email account on //

The project goal of openSUSE-ID is quite simple. With more than 200 million people (assume that 50% are under age, the rest is 100 million people), openSUSE will have a great opportunity to be adopted in Indonesian.

Indonesia is a poor country. We have problems in the education department. Proprietary software is very expensive for most of us. The piracy issues bring us to look at other possible solutions. openSUSE is one of the best choices because I’ve tried this at work in daily basis.

What especially motivates you to participate in the openSUSE project?

I use openSUSE with love and passion :-) . I write a number of articles in Bahasa Indonesia. I want to see a bigger openSUSE community around the world and most of them came from Indonesia.

What do you think was your most important contribution to the openSUSE project/community or what is the contribution that you’re most proud of?

The most important? Speaking of software or packages, I still have nothing to shared. I think my power ;-) is not about technical stuff. I am mostly known as a writer of tutorials and an openSUSE marketing people to encourage people to used openSUSE.

I want to contribute with other stuff, and I will try this in the future.

When do you usually spend time on the openSUSE project?

After work hours. Sometimes, I work on the openSUSE project all day because what I’m doing is related to the openSUSE too.

Three words to describe openSUSE? Or make up a proper slogan!

Simple and easy to use. Try it!

What do you think is missing or underrated in the distribution or the project?

Free CD :-) . Besides the quality, one of the main reasons for Ubuntu’s popularity in Indonesia (and in the world, I think) is an easy way to get the CD. It’s not problem in USA or Europe or in another countries with high speed internet connections but this feature is very popular in countries with expensive communication costs and poor internet connection just like my country :-) . I know, there is a free promo DVD from but it would be nice to prepare this in some regional area. It would be nice to distribute the CD from nearest area rather than request this from

What do you think the future holds for the openSUSE project?

openSUSE will still be at the top of my mind in Linux distributions because openSUSE has a great features, complete packages, enthusiastic developers, and good marketing guys (related to Zonker, new openSUSE Community Manager). In my mind, what the openSUSE guys made in the last 6 months show us about their focus on openSUSE development and increasing the openSUSE fans.

A person asks you why he/she should choose openSUSE instead of other distribution/OS. What would be your arguments to convince him/her to pick up openSUSE?

Good hardware detection (the most important thing compared to other distros), complete set of package and a nice graphic arts.

Which members of the openSUSE community have you met in person?

Hmmmh, nobody I met. I know one member of openSUSE community, poepil (Donnie S Bhayangkara) who contributed to KDE, and yeah, I met him from openSUSE community members. I think it would be nice to travel around the world and meet the openSUSE enthusiasts :-D

How many icons are currently on your desktop?

  1. I have a bad behaviour to save every downloaded piece of software onto the Desktop, so I move this into specified folder every morning. I choose the Desktop because it just like our face. If it looks so dirty and complicated, it shows that we must clean up and relax.

What is the application you can’t live without? And why?

Browser. Text and Web Browser.

Which application or feature should be invented as soon as possible?

One-Click-Install for most common server configurations. Just to note, Samba-YAST configuration has a minor feature compared to webmin.

Which is your preferred text editor? And why?

Kate. Its name sounds pretty nice… I can write the blog posting draft and in another case, use it for code development.

Which famous person would you want to join the openSUSE community?

Mark Shuttleworth. Oh, I think he has joined the mailing list :-) .

C++ (Qt) and Java, because I want to contribute to openSUSE development and developing applications which make our life a lot of easier while using openSUSE. By the way, I have a dirty hand while setting up a mail server with openSUSE. It’s pretty nice to look at the experience right now but it made me crazy 2 years ago :-)

The Internet crashes for a whole week — how would you feel, what would you do?

Hmmh, it’s time to relax. My beloved wife complained to me that I used the Internet 24 hours a day (and she is right, because I use my mobile phone to access the internet).

I love going hiking and trekking, so if the Internet crashed for a week, I would take vacation and relax.

Which is your favorite movie scene?

Gone with the wind.

Star Trek or Star Wars?

Nothing from both choices. In fact, I don’t know why this question is asked for everyone in People of openSUSE interviews. I don’t know how popular it was in the USA, Europe or another countries but personally I don’t like too high science fiction. I’m more interested with real films. The exception for me though is Jurassic Park.

My hobby is about writing and reading and my favorite book is Miyamoto Musashi and Taiko (Toyotomi Hideyoshi). It’s a Japanese book and I love the movie based on this book.

What is your favorite food and drink?

Chicken soup and Pepsi cola.

Favorite game or console (in your childhood and nowadays)?

Age of Empires. I used my Windows box to play this in 1998 and early 2000.

Which city would you like to visit?

Nuremberg, Germany. I heard so may great people from Germany, I would love to travel to the city where much many openSUSE guys come from. Another is Mecca, Osaka and Beijing.

What is your preferred way to spend your vacation?

Traveling and trekking. I want to try scuba diving but I can’t swim.

Someone gives you $1.000.000 — what would you do with the money?

Build a non profit organization to spread free openSUSE CDs around of Indonesia. I don’t know if it sounds realistic or not but I want Indonesia to be well-known as the biggest openSUSE community outside Europe.

If traveling through time was possible — when would we be most likely to meet you?

Before marriage :-)

There’s a thunderstorm outside — do you turn off your computer?

Yes. I choose to read books :-)

Have your ever missed an appointment because you forgot about it while sitting at your computer?

In the past, yes. With this experience, I used Tomboy to write my appointments. I’ve tried so many task schedule software but I’m too lazy to update them. Tomboy is simply “Write it, Create it”.

Show us a picture of something, you have always wanted to share!

My beloved son, 2 years old in March 26, 2008.


You couldn’t live without…

Water, air and most common requirements for human beings.

Which question was the hardest to answer?

If traveling through time was possible – when would we be most likely to meet you? I don’t understand it :-P

What other question would you like to answer? And what would you answer?

Do you like to work on openSUSE? Answer : yes, with passion and love…

Categories: People of openSUSE


Share this post: