Absolutely new to Ubuntu, a refugee from the Microsoft world. Windows 8 made my decision for me.

I'm currently running Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit on a Dell Inspiron 1750
I have downloaded and created the install disc for Ubuntu 12.10, and taken it for a test drive from the DVD.

Love it!

Now... I want to install it side-by-side with my Win7 installation, but various tutorials on the Web have made me a little nervous due to so many different things that could go wrong, and so many things to check and keep track of; and a lot of standby fixes for all the what-ifs.

My brother told me that he installed Ubuntu with Win7 with no problems, and all he did was follow the prompts, and never had to worry about all the contingencies. But I'm not so brave as I have a lot to lose - even though everything is backed up - I can't spend a lot of time reinstalling everything if it all goes south. I do Web design and online marketing, so there are a LOT of programs and apps to reinstall, which takes a few days. I've just finished recovering from a HD death, and I need to get productive again ASAP.

So my question is, what's the most reliable and least time consuming way to accomplish my goal here? The information I find just makes my eyes glaze over because there are too many scenarios. I realize that all angles have to be covered, but is it really such a touchy thing to install Ubuntu side by side with Windows? Or is information overload making me too paranoid? lol