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Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
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The first suggestion is to download the newest version of Ubuntu which would be either 12.04 long term release or 12.10. 9.04 is way out of date and is unsupported and as such you will run into many issues.
Ubuntu 9.04 End its support at end of Oct 2010, you will not get latest update from the release what you have installed .You have to installed current release of ubuntu version is 12.04 LTS so you can get latest patches & upgrade from these release version till April 2017
A quick google search shows your laptop possibly has Broadcom wireless? Here are instructions to determine if you have Broadcom, and which specific chipset, and how to install the correct driver on a supported Ubuntu release (9.04 is no longer supported):