After trying out the Mandriva One 2009 KDE Live CD, I have installed it on my laptop as my primary OS. The installation was a snap. It took less than 10 minutes to install the system. But after the login, there were a few things that did not work quite as expected.
1. There was no CD burner software installed. Yes, it is in the repos but how can something so basic be missing from the default install. What will a person without Internet access do?
2. MP4 movies did not play on either Dragon Player or Movie Player. This was expected, but they did not play well even after installing the codecs. Fortunately there was a mention about this in the errata and I could get things playing now.
3. The laptop screen brightness kept dipping every 5-10 minutes. This one was a real annoyance and was solved with help from the Mandriva Forum.
4. There was no notification when I used the volume controls placed in the front of my Dell Inspiron 6400. The volume actually reduces, but I have no idea to check the current volume using these buttons. The volume control in the system tray shows only the PCM volume. Can PCM and the Front volume be synced somehow as it is done in Ubuntu? [Update: I actually figured this out. Right click on the speaker icon from the system tray and click on Select Master Channel. Select Front and then click on OK. Now the speaker volume levels increase or decrease every couple of key presses. But not for every press]
5. I have to start kpowersave manually to get suspend work when I close the laptop lid.
6. One positive thing I noticed is Mandriva never crashed at any time. I never had to do a hard boot anytime in the past three days.
In the past three days I have been using Mandriva One 2009 KDE4 as my only OS and I am just evaluating whether I can use it for my regular day to day work as an average user. I have this whole week to decide and next Monday I would make the call.