While dealing with things in Wisconsin earlier this month, Xubuntu 10.04 annoyed me for the last time. I wound up having to boot into Windows to get some things done since 10.04 just plain quit doing a thing or two I needed. That was, of course, the last straw. There was simply NO more reason to keep 10.04 around.
So a couple weeks ago I downloaded Xubuntu 11.10 and tried it as a LiveCD on andalusian. I still had to install the 32-bit compatibility libraries, but they worked - and the laptop's wireless hardware was recognized, which I consider a Big Win over needing to recompile the wireless driver at each kernel update as I did with 10.04. Another win was that once the wireless was set up, after the actual install to hard drive, the settings were retained. Maybe this was the case before, but not having hardware recognized by default meant I didn't encounter it. I left things sit for a while (been rather busy with various other things of late...) and only recently ran some updates. Another win: Upon rebooting I did not need to manually restart the local wireless connection as I did before.
I'd heard there were some issues with 11.10, but so far I've not run into them. I am considering updating belgian to 11.10 as well. While it is an improvement, I still hope to run PCLinuxOS. The 64 bit version of that is still in testing (not even beta yet, let alone Release Candidate...) though if 11.10 had given me trouble I was considering going to 32-bit PCLOS with the PAE kernel - a hack to let 32-bit software use 64-bit memory space after a fashion. Why PCLOS? Because after using PCLOS for a few years, *buntu, even with the improvements, still feels 'almost' to me.