As a Linux noob I must say I'm very impressed with Natty Narwhal. The install on my MSI A6000 notebook was pretty much flawless. All devices were found and worked after the install. It is taking some time to change my mindset to the Linux way but so far so good.
My issue is that the wireless is a bit inconsistent. I can connect at work one day and the next day will require a reboot. When it works it works fine except at home where it will run slow and drop the connection. Is there a way to update the driver?
I cannot say. As long as it supports Opensource 802.11b/g/n, it should not cause problems.
The wireless router is the variable I would start with, is all.
(And I prefer 10.04 LTS -- after this, ubuntu seems to be headed a direction I do not wish to follow)
Another approach to try to surmise where the bottleneck is occurring is to watch the network traffic when "healthy" and compare that to when you are seeing the performance issues (do you see an uptick in RST's? or longer response times from one of the segments of the network). I haven't used RaLink cards extensively, but when I have the card+driver seemed pretty robust.