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> ...
> What is kernel panic? I heard it mentioned on the list recently...

It means the kernel was unable to continue.  The particular reason should 
be in an error message.  It's almost always caused by some kind of 
misconfiguration or damage to the configuration.

> How can I load Linux so that it runs completely separate from Windows,
> (ie. no bootloader, stability of one doesn't affect the other, etc.)?

You can get the most separation in a dual-boot setup by booting Linux only 
from diskette.  Otherwise one OS is going to have to be in charge of 
booting the other.

With computers so cheap now, another thing to consider is having a 
separate Linux box networked to your Windows machine.  With VNC you can 
even stick it away in a closet and access everything from one machine.  
This makes a lot of sense if you also have a reason to run your own web, 
mail, file or print server, or internet gateway, or any combination of 

-- Rod
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