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I'm a newbie. I'm putting in a new drive (no OS installed) in my Lenovo T400 laptop. Can I boot from my CD drive with the latest Ubuntu image and install it to the new drive that has no OS? Any specifics I should be aware of? Thank you.

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before doing any of this stuff, I have to logically assume your new drive is either an SSD or a new fancy SATA spinner but in that PC there is a built-in hardware encryption for the original drive so if that's the one you're installing (like a refurbished or new from Lenovo) you should go into the BIOS first to set it up correctly with a new key/passphrase and initialize it that way. Also update its firmware. If this doesn't apply to you then have at it with the install but otherwise, make sure this is all completed BEFORE installing your new OS on it. – Deryck May 29 '14 at 6:55

Yes absolutely.U can also boot & install from a usb drive (it is a bit faster).Just remember if your hardware supports UEFI, keep in enabled(u'll find it in BIOS). Ubuntu 14.04 is compatible with it.Also don't forget to check this

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If you don't have any other hdd in the laptop go ahead and install. If you have also another hdd with data in the computer, back-up the data first. You may want to try the live version first to check that all you hardware is working properly.

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You can install on Lenovo T400 with new HDD without any problem, Just download Ubuntu from:- Ubuntu 14.04 - Desktop X86-64: and make a bootable USB pen drive with you can do easily by these steps:-

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