After installation, I booted into the default Gnome session. The first thing I did was to start up Evolution and get it configured. Within about 10 minutes I was connected to my Exchange 2000 server with the Exchange connector and accessing email, contacts, and calendars. After another 5 minutes or so of tweaking, I had auto-complete checking my personal contacts and the Global Address List and was able to fully communicate with my other Outlook-using co-workers. Before installing I had backed up all my docs and my Mozilla profile to a 1Gb USB key. I plugged in the key and within seconds I had a new desktop icon and was able to view my documents.
Firefox is the default browser. I installed Mozilla (from Mozilla.org) then copied my Mozilla profile from my USB key to my home dir and after changing some paths had Mozilla accessing all my favorite sites and checking my personal mail accounts. I walked through the printer wizard and was able to use the Samba connectors to connect to all 4 of our office printers (after walking around and getting the model numbers). I fired up OpenOffice and randomly chose 30 Word, Excel, and Powerpoint created docs. With the exception of one, they all looked just fine. I then printed each of the 30 test documents in both color and black&white and they looked just fine.
I then took a trip over the pptpclient.sourceforge.net and followed the instructions for FC2. With the exception of some newer packages/versions, it installed just fine and about 5 minutes later I was on my VPN (Note: I use special characters in my password. When using pptpclient it is necessary to manually edit the conf file and put your password in quotes if you use special characters). Next was MP3 and encrypted DVD support. Thankfully, our friends at Freshrpms.net had their repository ready for FC3 the day of release. So I installed apt-get and synaptic and within about 30 minutes of downloads, I had all the software and codecs needed to listen to my audio collection and watch The Matrix (both from DVD and Divx). I also installed the mplayer-plugin, then went to watch the Quicktime video at the OQO website. Mplayer kicked in and all was working just fine. Then came getting my 802.11b working. I had previously played with the release candidate of FC3 and had some issues with the ipw2100 module due to the newer firmware. Searching showed that others had the same issue. So I crossed my fingers and tapped my heels together and went for it. Someone fixed something somewhere cause I had it working about 20 minutes later.
The next test was the integration of OpenOffice for certain file extensions. I went back to Evolution and emailed myself four attachments: one .rtf, one .doc, one .xls, and one .ppt. Once they arrived, I clicked on each within Evolution. Unfortunately, only the .doc and the .rtf offered both a "Save As" and to open with OpenOffice Writer. The .xls and the .ppt only offered a "Save As" option. My final step was to setup power management. Neither my Fn+F4 (standby) or Fn+F12 (hibernate) buttons worked out of the box.
Within Gnome, I tried to suspend the system but got an APM error. Looking it at, the Gnome battery applet was trying to use APM to suspend my system. However, APM isn't loaded by default with FC3. By default, only ACPI is loaded. This seems like a bug to me... one that shows that none of the core FC developers use laptops. I replaced the APM command with an appropriate ACPI one and tried it. Let's just say it wasn't pretty. I rebooted and went into KDE and enabled ACPI support, then tried to suspend it. It half-worked. So that's when I decided to patch the kernel with "suspend to disk" support.
This was successful, and I was able to write a quick shell script to start the process, then configure both the Gnome and KDE battery applets to call my script to start it. So all told, about 12 hours after installation completed I had what I consider to be a fully working system. I could work locally and remotely. I could use all my hardware. I could maximize my battery consumption. Thanks to a host of third party add-ons and some well documented workarounds for FC2, FC3 is usable to me as a Windows XP replacement.