The install process enables the wireless adapter and detects Wi-Fi networks so that Ubuntu can download and install updates during the installation process. I was presented with three choices for installing Ubuntu--along side Windows, obliterating Windows and replacing it with Ubuntu, or "something else".
It seemed to me that the dual boot scenario I was looking for could be described as "along side Windows" so I chose that option. It was the wrong option.
I was expecting to be presented with a screen where I could choose which partition to install Ubuntu to, so I could select my newly created 50GB partition. Instead, Ubuntu Linux installed "along side Windows" in the same 450GB partition where Windows is already installed. Apparently, I was supposed to choose "something else" in order to accomplish the installation the way I intended.
Once the installation completed, the system restarted and a boot menu listed choices for me to choose from--including Ubuntu Linux, or the Windows loader I am used to. I chose to boot into Ubuntu Linux.
With this install, Ubuntu Linux detected that my graphics card is capable of handling Unity, but that I needed to download and install better drivers. I did so, and I rebooted, and...well, there is good news and bad news. The good news is that I finally got the Unity interface to work. The bad news is that it no longer works via HDMI with my external monitor. So, I can use Unity, but now I have to use my laptop as a laptop because it doesn't work with my monitor.
As of right now, I can start Ubuntu Linux three different ways. I can plug in my USB drive with Ubuntu and it will go straight into that OS. I can just boot the laptop, and I will be presented with the Ubuntu boot menu where I can choose between this latest install of Ubuntu, or the Windows loader. If I choose the Windows loader, I can select between booting into Windows, or booting into the Wubi install of Ubuntu.
I will do some cleanup. I plan to remove the Wubi install and erase the USB drive version. As for the local install, I am going to go back to the Ubuntu installation which offers an option now to erase the Ubuntu 11.04 install and reinstall. Hopefully, I can get the right option this time to really get Ubuntu Linux on a separate hard drive partition from Windows.
Now that I have Unity, I will dive into it and the Day 7 post will focus on my experience with Unity. In the meantime--if any of you Linux gurus have some advice for getting my Ubuntu Linux with Unity to work on my external monitor via HDMI, feel free to share.