Re: Battery life?
I'd recommend getting a bigger battery (like a 9 cell) as there's only so much life you can squeeze out of your battery!
Other than that, you could run (sudo powertop to identify what options can be applied to help with battery life.
I try to treat the cause, not the symptom. I avoid the terminal in instructions, unless it's easier or necessary. My instructions will work within the Ubuntu system, instead of breaking or subverting it. Those are the three guarantees to the helpee.