Today I installed the new beta on my Celeron 1.3 GHz desktop and my Turion 64 X2 laptop--the one on which I can't get wireless and sound to work in 5.8 Standard.
The desktop installation was very easy and although I haven't done much testing, so far everything is working. Midnight Commander in Terminal worked fine and wonder of wonders, Orage STARTS ON SUNDAY!!!That's the custom in the US but previous Orages started on Monday (workaround could get them started on Sunday). The computer has a Radeon 9200 video card, so I tried the proprietary ATI driver first. X wouldn't start. Fatal error. So I switched to the open source radeon driver and that solved the problem.
The laptop is another story.
First of all, I couldn't get any kernel to install except scsi2. The other three got stuck on "io schedular dfg registered (default)" but would continue if I tapped the Power button on the laptop. (Weird?) But then they'd get to "Floppy drive(s): fd0 is unknown type 14 (usb?); fd1 is unknown type (usb?)" There's a number after unknown type but I can't read my handwriting. After that line appears, the computer locks tight and I have to press and hold the power button to shut down. The scsi2 kernel does work, fortunately. I don't know why, as this computer has no SCSI. However, there's something called iSCSI that appears several times in the boot messages and also in Windows Vista's Device Manager. There is, of course, no floppy drive and perhaps the messages about fd0 and fd1 are about the built-in USB ports.
I first tried to install the proprietary nVidia video driver but X wouldn't start--Fatal Error, something about no server could be found. Then I used the open source nvidia driver and the XFce desktop came up fine. When I had 5.8 Standard on the laptop, I installed the nVidia driver from nVidia's Web site and it worked fine and gave me true 1280x800 resolution (the open-source nVidia driver just squashes the screen though it's not too bad).
No sound driver was loaded and no wireless.
However, I noticed the possible cause, which I've experienced on previous VL releases and which really should be fixed. If you install anything but the default choice for kernel, no modules are loaded. As I learned before, that's because the scsi2 kernel isn't finding what it needs in /usr/src, so no modules are found or loaded. I was once told how to fix this, but of course I can't remember. If we're going to offer more than one kernel choice, it should install correctly and WORK when the user starts for the first time after installation is complete.
I won't bother to see if I can get my sound and wireless to work in the 5.9 beta until I know how to get this module thing fixed.
So my results are very good on the older desktop, a mess on the laptop. I won't be trying this beta on my newer desktop, though I'm considering installing the 64-bit release in the Linux partition. I have a very nice VL in VirtualBox under XP on that computer and am leaning toward sacrificing my actual Linux partition for the sake of testing 64-bit VL.
How can I get the scsi2 kernel to find the modules?
Also, is there any way we can do better as far as setting up wireless networking? It's so obscure. Take a look at PCLinuxOS and its distro-specific wireless setup stuff. So easy and clear you don't need to read instructions and diddle around with stuff. VectorLinux would get a huge boost if we could have something similar to make a wireless setup easy.
One other thing: I HATED the default wallpaper in 5.9. I rushed to change it IMMEDIATELY.