After come time spent evaluating the pros and cons I've decided to take the risk and upgrade from Xfree86 to xorg and then install compiz to enjoy the same visual effects that I happen to like so much on when I'm on my mac mini.
On my gentoo 2004 laptop it has not been easy, but following the accurate guide at Gentoo Wiki made it at least painless. I did not even had to edit my xorg.conf, just restart X and it was all there, only much better.
Compiz proved to be much harder, particularly because of some bad interaction with Nautilus that decided to crash when I started compiz and so I had to emerge gnome (from 2.14 to 2.16). Emerging gnome was also not easy, because gnome-cups-manager aborted with compilation errors, due (it seems) to an old gcc (I have 2.3.3). I decided not to upgrade gcc and simply emerged a previous version of gnome-cups-manager and after two days compiling here I am enjoying all the usual desktop composting goodness!
BTW: the new Wanda icons are really better and worth the upgrade alone!
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