I now expect Ubuntu to work strait out of the box so I was disappointed by a severe bug in the kernel that the current version of Natty uses.
Linux duncan-HP 2.6.39-02063904-generic #201108040905 SMP Thu Aug 4 11:04:48 UTC 2011 i686 i686 i386 GNU/Linux
The issue makes the cursor periodically freeze on the screen for up to a second. The system can still be used, but the experience is extremely frustrating. It turns out that a process called kworker is using 100% of the CPU. This can be fixed by following the instructions here, http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1796873.
sudo echo “options drm_kms_helper poll=N”>/etc/modprobe.d/local.conf
and rebooting solved the problem for me.
Notice that if you install this version you get a new “look and feel”. Not to my taste, but it is easy to go back to the old classic at log in.