I think the problem may be with the hardware being too new. Some lap tops have good comparability with mainstream linux distros.
I had better success with older hardware and although they run slow under windows (which is by design by M$) they run quite fast under linux.
For example Lubuntu 12.04 installs without problem on a Lenovo 3000 N100. With rvm and RubyMine I can run multiple versions of ruby and rails.