I have a Compaq Armada 1700 from 1999 that runs Vector Linux 5.8 Std. quite happily.
When I tried an installation of VL 5.9, the install boot would not start up the cooling fan on the laptop (VL 5.8 installation does this no problem.) I got halfway through the install and the CPU temperature got critically hot and my laptop shut down. This resulted in a corrupt installation and a disfunctional laptop.
Needless to stay I have re-installed VL 5.8 and will keep going with it as long as I can. Everything works fine again.