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New Gateway computer.. can I install Debian on it?

An acquaintance of mine has a new Gateway P3-450 computer with a 12 GB
hard drive. She wants to use about half that space for Linux, and I
recommended to her that she get slink, because I use it myself and am
fairly familiar with it. However, when I tried to install from the slink
CD's, I got an error about "Could not find a valid disk to install to."
It seems that slink (and also RedHat 5.2) can't detect her hard drive!

I investigated further (it's not a partitioning problem, BTW.. fips
worked fine, and i even tried downloading a windows program to make ext2
filesystems and rebooting again, with no luck..) I eventually found out
that in her BIOS, under Primary Master, is listed [None]. I can change
[None] to [Auto] but that doesn't help. The only device on there at all
is Secondary master, which is her DVD-ROM drive (which debian can read
perfectly fine.)

Any ideas on what I can/should do to get the Debian install program to
recognize her hard drive and start installation?

Your help is much appreciated.... thanks!

Colin McMillen
Debian GNU/Linux 2.1: 5 hours, 34 minutes without a reboot...
The revolution will be complete when the operating system is perfect.
(www.debian.org, www.enlightenment.org, www.opensource.org)

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