Yet more on "Life is Good..": This same hardware can be gotten up and running on Ubuntu 9.04 by manually downloading the debs for the 2.6.30 kernel from http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v2.6.30/ . Things got a little hairy when I hit the nvidia drivers. The theory runs that DKMS should handle all those details automatically. For me, DKMS choked on the nvidia module. One reader on Launchpad suggested installing the drivers first, then the drivers. This didn't quite work when I tried it. I had to install the new kernel (probably for the source and headers), then run the updated drivers that the reader referenced, then reinstall the kernel (so that DKMS would pick up the new module and use it). I'm sure there's more rhyme and reason to it all than that, but this is what I had to do to get it running.