Quick answer to your questions: here is my current setup for this computer:
30gb Windows Vista Ultimate (working...despite Vector Linux =)
50gb openSUSE GNOME (had to install about an hour ago to fix the bootloader Vector trashed)
150gb ntfs storage
A slightly longer explanation:
how many hard drives are on your PC and which OS are you using them for
There is one hard drive ~250gb.
I did have a different version of Linux installed...here's a brief rundown of the past week.
~) Brief history of the computer: bought in November, came with Vista Home Premium installed, HDD partitioned into two. I installed Windows 7 Beta on the 2nd partition
1) As of last week: Vista had screwed up my computer by duplicating EVERYTHING in my 'Personal' folder. Rather than fix it, I decided to do a clean install. Repartitioned Vista HP to 30gb, setup openSUSE 11.1 KDE on a 25gb partition, 5gb swap, and had W7. KDE was pretty unstable, so I decided to switch to openSUSE GNOME.
2) I don't know what happened, but shortly after I installed oSG, my partition table completely fragmented. I rewrote the table and set up 4 partitions: 30gb VistaHP, 60gb (55 + swap) for Linux (not installed), and the rest for storage.
3) Managed to get a student copy of Vista Ultimate, clean install, no worries.
4) Installed Mint Xfce on my lab computer, loved it. Tried to install on the 60gb partition -- had errors mentioned.
5) Since then, I have also tried Mint GNOME, Xubuntu, Mandriva KDE, openSUSE KDE and GNOME, Vector; all had correct Md5 sums and all except the Xubuntu and Vector have been previously installed on other systems. The KDEs were unstable (on all systems -- not just this one), and the Mint GNOME, Mint Xfce, and Xubuntu all had the exact same reaction mentioned in the first post. Vector refused to load X11 and would not boot past the load up screen (not to mention a number of other problems it created).
was your video card working before you try to install Linux
Yes. It works (unstable) on Mandriva and oSUSE KDE and well on oSUSE GNOME. Also works flawlessly (once the driver installed anyway) on VistaHP, Ultimate, and Windows 7...actually W7 worked even without the driver.
do you have any OS on your PC now that you can still boot up to
Yes, I'm on Vista Ultimate right now, so it's not really pressing as I do have a working computer.
Spider, thank you for your help. It is much appreciated. Please let me know if there is any more information I can provide. Unfortunately, since it doesn't really do anything, there is not much I can get, or rather that I know how to get at.