got debian etch booted on entropy. the only problem I had was I tried at first to use lilo. several years ago, grub wouldn’t work on this machine, and I had to use lilo. Rembering that, I tried to install lilo from the get-go. but the complication of installing lilo into the second hard drive on the system so it would later boot as the first drive were a bit much. after 2 failed attempts (each one meaning I had to swap the drive into the other computer, changing a jumper at the same time), I gave up and tried grub again. it worked fine.