Fedora Core 4 does not exist any more. Fedora 7 and Fedora 8 are the current releases, and Fedora 9 is around the corner. You won't find any support for Fedora 4 from the Fedora community. Grab yourself a copy of the F8 DVD
As for linux driver/hardware support... its patchy... some areas its excellent, others its less so. Also, it varies between distros because some distros are "bleeding edge" and therefore support new hardware, and some distros are more stable/older and therefore don't support a lot of new hardware. A new release of Fedora (8 preferably) would be a good choice, especially for a laptop - you'll find that most things work although some take more configuration and time to make work than others... its all a good learning process though and there is tons of support available through various channels for when things don't go right.
Grab F8 and go for it!