Laptops aren't always that easy to get working right unfortunatly :S
I suppose you have an Intel 855PM chipset (you ought to write these things when you ask for help though)
Have you tried this ? download the file called 855wrap.tar.gz in bash you can do this by typing:
(wget is a small program to foremost download files, but check it out later, you can download entire sites with it :P )
Anyway, once down type:
tar -xvzf 855wrap.tar.gz
to unpack it...
ls and see the contents.. you should see a directory called 855wrap, enter this like you do in DOS aka
once inside (hope you have a distro with actual tools)
type "make" to compile the code and get a binary file
ls and you should see a file called 855wrap. You can run this by typing:
If this works it will say something about detecting your chipset and the wrapper should be installed..
re-try the startx command. If it doesn't work, try reconfiguring X with
Now. If you can, choose the 855gm driver.. If you don't have that, you might be able to choose i810 which works good too. If none of these exist however, try choosing Vesa
It's not too hard to configure, just hang in there and read the instructions, it looks more scary than it is..
Hope you get it working
Remember though that running 855wrap has to be done each time you boot. I usually put it in my rc.local file like:
/path/to/file/855wrap #runs 855wrap
But doing that requires root.. Good luck.