[ubuntu] It seems like forever ago

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http://ubuntuforums.org – Well Im new to Ubuntu. I used Red Hat for a short while eons ago, but have been using windows for the most part. I finally decided that I need to learn Linux and Unix so I did a clean install of Ubuntu on my laptop (HP Pavilion dv6 w/AMD A6 cpu). Just installed today and it seems to be taxing my system heavily. Im assuming that I just need to hunt for the proper drivers. I know there is a **** ton of Linux stuff out there, but what is the best place to start? Thank you for your input, even the smart *** comments that usually follow lol. (Hardware)