Comment 21 for bug 349519

That's unfortunate. I did a new install this morning and did the following test, please let me know if you've done anything different:

1. From the default install, start desktop-switcher and switch to Classic Mode
2. Reboot and see if panels are available
3. Start desktop-switcher and switch back to Netbook Mode,
4. Reboot and see if panels are available

I did this many times and everything works as expected. Can you please attach to the bug report the output of

gconftool-2 --dump /apps/panel
gconftool-2 --dump /desktop/gnome/session

Thanks!