SuSE + apt + synaptic = It Works!
I just installed SuSE. Everything went well and the first thing I did was to download and install apt and synaptic. They both work! Woo hoo! This is a major achievement! Synaptic is really slick. If you are not running synaptic you are working in the Dark Ages.
SuSE has a very easy install and is very well done. Their method of setting up dial-up PPP is, um, different and needs to be much better documented IMO.