If you decided to run Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon on your Dell Inspiron 1501 you came to the right place. This blog is a great starter guide for getting things to work.
Every piece of hardware on the Dell 1501 works in Ubuntu, some things require setup but it's no more work then a fresh install of Windows XP/Vista. It's not as hard as it looks and everything here is tested and confirmed to work.
Everything You Need to Know About Running Ubuntu 7.10 on the Dell Inspiron 1501
Fix For Gutsy Taking a Long Time to Load
Installing the Newest ATI Driver with AIGLX
Wireless in Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon Using Restrictive Driver Manager
Wireless with Ndiswrapper
Compiz-Fusion with Xgl in Gutsy
HowTo Install Medibuntu& Play Encrypted (Copyrighted) DVDs
Easy Codec Installation
Getting the Modem to Work in Gutsy
Downgrading Your BIOS (fixes brightness/backlight issue)