I have tried SEVERAL distributions over the past year with minimal success.
I have an Averatec AV3715 (AMD Sempron 3000+, 1 Gig RAM)
Anything Knoppix based won't boot without nodhcp
Anything Ubuntu based distros get 'choppy' if the wireless is active and won't connect. Mint (Bianca) takes 30 minutes to startup from a live CD and won't run normally until I disable wireless. Then Mint lets me enable it but I cannot connect, nor can I actually get my essid to 'stick' even as root using iwconfig from the terminal.
FC4,5,6 won't connect wireless.
Puppy won't see the card.
Mandriva 2005, 2006 didn't work but 2007 does.
Xandros won't connect.
Linspire (Five-O and live) won't connect.
I can't remember if SuSE 10+ does, but I'll try OpenSuSE 10.2 this week...
The list goes on. Only Mandriva Free 2007 and Mepis connect me. I lost my Mepis disc and my only issues with Mandriva are that my mouse won't work on startup and I can't find a good java IDE that will actually work.
I have a pcmcia card with the same chipset. I have tried it using openSUSE 10.1 and 10.2, Mandriva 2007 and Fedora Core 6. It works perfectly all the time using the drivers from Serialmonkey.
Neither the current driver, nor the nightly cvs seem to work. In openSuSE 10.2, I still can't get it to work. iwlist shows no connections, iwspy doesn't work for my card.
of note, openSuSE identifies my card as MicroStar RT2500, not Ralink.
I have tried knetworkmanager and ifup.
Start a terminal emulator e.g. Konsole or gnome-terminal. After that enter the command
Post back the output.
/sbin/lspci | grep -i net
I have used the rt2500-1.1.0-b4 and rt2500-cvs-2007011909 releases of the driver and they work fine for me.