1. Defragment Windows. There can be errors if you fail to do this. 2. Boot a Live CD such as Gparted or Knoppix.3. Shrink the Windows partitions (C drive should be /dev/sda, and there might be a D: drive).
You can do this in Vista with the Vista resize tool.4. Reboot windows. This is just a sanity check, because resizing does not destroy data. If you fail to boot restore the partition table. 5. Install Linux. Fedora 9 and other distros recognize that a Windows system is installed and should set up GRUB properly. 6. When rebooting, reboot into Windows just to check that it boots. If it doesn't, then there are other more complicated things you can try to do that I won't go into.
I currently run Ubuntu on my laptop with Virtualbox and Windows XP as the guest OS. My home system is a Fedora 9 system also with Virtualbox.
Another way that you can do things is to install virtualbox under Windows (XP or Vista), and run Linux as a guestOS. Linux is my preferred host OS for a number of reasons, but the Linux file systems tend to be more robust and faster than the the Windows file systems, but the advantage to a person who is just getting into the Linux experience is that it is non-destructive.
-- Jerry Feldman <gaf blu org> Boston Linux and Unix PGP key id: 537C5846 PGP Key fingerprint: 3D1B 8377 A3C0 A5F2 ECBB CA3B 4607 4319 537C 5846
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