Installing a new OS on any system is a big headache and when it comes to your new laptop you are very scared too.
Just one day after i got my laptop ( DELL INSPIRON 1525) i sat for partioining and installing linux on it.
It had Vista pre-installed on it(Microsoft's Monopoly).
I had plans to use Vmware but i also wanted to have seperate OS.
For first time i had such a huge HDD(160GB), much than my 40GB on my old pc, so wanted to fulfill my dreams of having 4-5 OS :) :)
But here comes the problem, Vista didn't allow me to compress the C drive to less then 80GB.
I was not ready to give C drive that much huge space at any cost, so decided to partition from a live ubuntu cd.
I booted ubuntu 7.04 , started gparted("weapon of mass destruction"- as they say).
This weapon really did a mass destruction, it stopped at middle of resizing my c drive and said that error occured.
Now i was sure my Vista is gone.
Vista cried with thousands of error and refused to boot even in safe mode(mass distruction was done, how could it boot ).
So i decided to restore the system using the CD's i got with the laptop.
I reinstalled Vista, but the problem of partitioning was not solved.
I had one option of partitioning first and then reinstalling Vista or Linux, but that way Dell Media Direct was not installing.
So i decided to go by what they say RTFM.
I finally got the solution.
Here it is:
Dell gives a dvd labeled Media Direct, first boot from it,it has a good user interface and asks for partition size of C drive, i gave 30GB.
Then boot from the Vista DVD and install Vista on it, and then do whatever you like with the remaining partition.
Then i installed Fedora and Ubuntu seperately and Xp,solaris and others on Vmware ( I had 3GB of RAM :) )
All's Well That Ends Well