Originally Posted by godfor101
What I would like is to have 2 separate partitions (Ubuntu/XP) which I can boot into each separately, but also visualise the XP partition when booted in Ubuntu.
Is this possible?
Not easily. Windows is very very picky about the hardware configuration. Usually, moving windows from one machine to another with different hardware will not work out of the box, and it might completely break requiring a reinstall anyway. Using the same windows installation on your real machine and on a vm is exactly the same, since the vm has virtualized hardware, and do not provide direct access to your physical hardware.
Besides, a simple change in the disk ordering is enough to break windows horribly. I know no easy way to overcome these problems.
At most, you might have some degree of luck sharing the data partition. For example, you can create a separate partition for the "Documments and settings" stuff, that way your user configs and documents could be on a separate partition that could be accessed from the two separate windows installations (one in the disk, one in the vm). It's the only approach that I know that *should* work.