Firstly - I am advising from my memory of a red hat install I performed a couple of years ago. However modern linux installers pretty much follow the same route, that is they all have a partition tool that offers an option to dual boot with windows as standard. However you may like to wait a while to see if any red hat user can give a more detailed picture of red hats installer and partitioner. But I am certain that the following is fine.
And if any red hat bod out there can confirm this....?
Secondly - and please note I am using italics at this point please back up anything you would not wish to lose from your XP installation first! That may be a lot of data and it may take time, but I strongly recommend it.
Partitioning via a linux installer is pretty safe if you ask me and a million others, but please take care and take precautions just in case anything goes wrong.
Firstly if you want to use the partition wizard on the linux disc you will have to set up your computer to boot off the cd...I am not certain if red hat 9 sets up a live desktop setting, in which case you will have to click on the install icon that will be on the desktop, or if there is an option to install before anything else happens, right at the start.
So once you have the installer going, after a few choices - time zone,etc - it will reach the partitioner. I havent used red hat in years, but as memory and standard linux installs go there will be an option to partition the hard drive into three - one for the existing XP installation, one where red hat can go and a small partion for the swap volume. So having selected this option click 'next' or 'forward' and wait...at this point the partitions are created and red hat installs.
And good luck! I hope you enjoy your linux experience.