I know a lot of people, look for laptops on here so the following info may be useful to you.
From BBC News today
Laptop-makers including Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Toshiba are recalling 100,000 Sony-made batteries due to fears they may overheat or catch fire.
Sony said the recall came after 40 instances of overheating, including four cases where users had minor burns.
The recall affects around 74,000 HP laptops, 14,400 from Toshiba, and small numbers from Dell, Acer and Lenovo.
Sony said the affected batteries were caused by a production line problem between October 2004 and June 2005
It dosent mention how to tell which models are being recalled and I dont know if models produced in 2004/2005 would only just be selling now or if these are for old models.