So I've been trying to get a dual-boot (windows xp, ubuntu) on my laptop for the past week or so, and after bad experiences with Wubi, went the old-fashioned way with a live CD. It was made fine, and when I booted, I chose "Try Ubuntu" because a very techy friend was going to walk me through the installation process through IM. We got up to about step 3, when the previously slow process slowly ground to a halt (complete with gray screen), and I ended up hardbooting.
On take two, I just did "Install Ubuntu", because it seemed pretty straightforward, and I wanted it to be a bit faster.
So I succesfully completed the installation, putting it on my Western Digital external USB drive. Ubuntu told me to reboot. I did. It popped out my CD, and then gave me "Error 21", and something about Grub (Sorry, I'm not willing to jeopardize this web connection to get the exact wording). So I definitely want my Windows back (I saw nothing about dual-booting), and if some smart person gets me a working dual-boot, great, but I chiefly want an un-wiped Windows because my mom needs her Outlook Express, complete with old messages, and isn't the type to make the switch to Evolution.