I have found over the course of 3 different distros that USB hubs simply don't work "out of the box". Is there any advice out there that can help me get my USB hub working in Crunchbang?
All my USB hubs worked without a hitch, always. Yes, I've had broken(ish) USB ports that don't work right.
Make sure the devices don't draw too much power, the power a USB device is allowed to draw is limited (that's why many hubs have two connectors, as do USB disk drives), if you try to draw more from the hub than what it is able to get from the PC, something will fail. Some USB ports allow to draw much more power than what the standard says, others not much more.