From sometime now I’ve been working on debugging  software, I don’ mind using betas (with all the inherent pain), as a matter of fact I like it a lot. But recently I had a problem with my MERLIN U740 PCMCIA card (it’s a 3G modem). This card emulates two USB ports and in one there’s the modem. This as been working for year without problems but since the kernel 2.6.24 it stopped working in x86_64. I didn’t care that much as i was working out of the country and didn’t use the card. But now I need to use it so I posted a bug report in OpenSuSE (the distro i use) and I’ve been testing their output on this bug. Finally its solved in the kernel 2.6.31 (from the release candidate 3) and it will be included in the main stream OpenSuSE distribution 11.2 (it’s already included in the factory version).

The bug I’m talking about is described in:

https://bugzilla.novell.com/show_bug.cgi?id=502557

and it’s about the following kernel messages:

USB HC takeover failed!  (BIOS/SMM bug)

So in the end i can say I’m pretty happy with Linux support, and this kind of support is available to open source distros, not only to enterprise level distributions such as SLES or RHE. Just keep on filling those bugs reports when you find one.
Cheers,
Pedro Oliveira