It works. Almost out of the box. I got caught out by stupidly enabling gdm before i had added a non-privileged user, so I had to recover by loading a 'knoppix live CD' and using it to mount, and then edit, the /etc/rc,conf to add a "!" before gdm in the daemons line. A hint: if you want to run a knoppix livecd, you CAN, but specify "fb800x600" in the boot line or the framebugger exceeds the screen size and you can't see the bottom lines when running 'vi'
Further GNOME amendments will be added to this if need be later