SaulGoode, thank you, that is precisely the sort of thing I was looking for, rather than the two-floppy boot disk/root disk method I knew about.
Maybe you're trying to boot an old Gateway with curved sides...
No, this is a massive (heavy!) tower with straight sides. I'm not home now, so I don't have the model name handy. In the final analysis, this detail is probably irrelevant, anyway.
Before you try that, though, you should be setting the BIOS so the first boot device is CDROM...
I'm not THAT much of a newb -- I tried that. The bios options are very specific; I can boot from Drive A or Drive C only. So, maybe if I remove ALL the HD's, the CDROM will become the C drive....but then, where would I install to?
Also, as a preliminary step, you should clean the drive of other operating systems. You can do this with FDISK on a Win98SE boot disk.http://www.bootdisk.com/
Or, I could just use gparted and/or mke2fs from a terminal window once I get the LiveCD booted. Like I said, I'm not THAT much of a newb. You apparently didn't notice when I said (bullet point 2b) that I'd tried booting the machine from from a WIn98 floppy, which sort of implies that I already have one. But thanks for the website, if I ever need to replace it. As far as nuking the existing OS's, it's usually prudent to not break something that's working until one is certain to be able to get it working again.
You need 3.2 GB or so of hdd space for an install of VL 5.8 Std.
That sux -- any Linux that won't fit on a single 2.5GB drive is obviously getting bloated! Kidding!
But why did you even mention that? I already said I have at least 4GB available. Even if I *don't* absorb that 480MB ntfs partition, which I still might.
chown -R us ./base <! I know, old joke, but I still think it's funny>