Have both Drupal 6.17 and 7.0-5 up and running on localhost

Clean URL in drupal is not available on any of them
Have been reading and reading troubleshooting,
but obviously overlooking something
and needs help.

Environment:
Linux 2.6.31.12-0.2
openSUSE 11.2 (x86_64) (KDE 4.3.5)

Mysql 5.1.36-6.8.8-x86_64

apache 2.2.13-2.4.1-x86_64 (opensuse)
apache2-mod_php5
apache2-prefork
apache2-utils

php 5.3.2-1.1.1-x86_64
register_global = off
safe_mode = off
pdo drivers = mysql, sqlite, sqlite2
session.cache_delimiter = nocache
session.auto_start = off

Drupal 6.17 on localhost/drupal617

In httpd.conf:
# use .htaccess files for overriding,
AccessFileName .htaccess
# and never show them
<Files ~ "^\.ht">
Order allow,deny
Deny from all
</Files>

# List of resources to look for when the client requests a directory
DirectoryIndex index.html index.html.var

in .htaccess
# Various rewrite rules.
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine on

# If your site can be accessed both with and without the 'www.' prefix, you
# can use one of the following settings to redirect users to your preferred
# URL, either WITH or WITHOUT the 'www.' prefix. Choose ONLY one option:
#
# To redirect all users to access the site WITH the 'www.' prefix,
# (Example Web Page... will be redirected to Example Web Page...)
# adapt and uncomment the following:
# RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^example\.com$ [NC]
# RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.example.com/$1 [L,R=301]
#
# To redirect all users to access the site WITHOUT the 'www.' prefix,
# (Example Web Page... will be redirected to Example Web Page...)
# uncomment and adapt the following:
# RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www\.example\.com$ [NC]
# RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://example.com/$1 [L,R=301]

# Modify the RewriteBase if you are using Drupal in a subdirectory or in a
# VirtualDocumentRoot and the rewrite rules are not working properly.
# For example if your site is at http://example.com/drupal uncomment and
# modify the following line:
RewriteBase /drupal617
#
# If your site is running in a VirtualDocumentRoot at Example Web Page,
# uncomment the following line:
# RewriteBase /

# Rewrite URLs of the form 'x' to the form 'index.php?q=x'.
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !=/favicon.ico
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ index.php?q=$1 [L,QSA]
</IfModule>

***********************************
linux-1ap4:~ # apache2ctl -M
Loaded Modules:
core_module (static)
mpm_prefork_module (static)
http_module (static)
so_module (static)
actions_module (shared)
alias_module (shared)
auth_basic_module (shared)
authn_file_module (shared)
authz_host_module (shared)
authz_groupfile_module (shared)
authz_default_module (shared)
authz_user_module (shared)
autoindex_module (shared)
cgi_module (shared)
dir_module (shared)
env_module (shared)
expires_module (shared)
include_module (shared)
log_config_module (shared)
mime_module (shared)
negotiation_module (shared)
setenvif_module (shared)
ssl_module (shared)
userdir_module (shared)
php5_module (shared)
rewrite_module (shared)
Syntax OK

Please help!