did he update his system?
can you give use the specs of the laptop he is using. it'd be much easier to help him out knowing what hardware he is dealing with.
Make sure if updates his Ubuntu
sudo apt-get install update
and i would also try this, it may work...
sudo /etc/init.d/networking restart
let us know if it works...and give us more details about his laptop
Desktop - DualBoot: Fedora 15/Windows 7 64bit
Netbook - Windows 7 Professional
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