My desire to install Ubuntu via USB is somewhat assuaged by the prospect of installing from the netboot ISO. My problem now is that if your network card isn’t immediately recognized, or if your machine won’t boot from USB, it’s of little use to you.
So while I can install via USB on my Latitude CPx J750GT, I have to use another CD to boot the machine and jump to USB … which was always the case, so it’s not that big a deal. Smartboot is a viable alternative, as is the SLAX boot CD.
However, on that GX260 with the Linksys WMP54G v4.1, it would have been worthless. If the network doesn’t work on first boot, it won’t get done.