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system lock on boot

I am new to Debian so I hope I am giving the needed information to
recieve help from the Debian comunity.

My scsi controller (Adaptec AHA-2940U/UW Dual) supports
bootable cd-roms.  I am trying to install
Debian 2.1 (kernel 2.2.12) from a VA Linux distribution I purchased in a

store.  I boot from the cd-rom and press
<enter> to start the installation.  Things start to scroll
across the screen and then the computer
locks, not responding to anything but a warm reboot.  Before
it hangs it looks like it is loading
drivers for my hard disks connected to my scsi card.  I have
three hard drives and two cd-roms.  The
bootable hard drive is at id 0, another at id 1, another at id 2, and
two cd-roms at id 3 and 4.  The scsi controller id is at 7.  After what
looks like the second scsi device being detected "(scsi1)" the system
locks.  The last two lines on the screen read:

(scsi1) downloading sequencer code... 374 instructions downloaded
NCR53c406a: no available ports found

Also I notice that Linux identifies my scsi card incorrectly
as a AIC 7895 U

My guess is that it has found something it does not like
with my hard drive that is at id2.  (it is
an old hard drive that came out of my first computer, an IBM
P/S 2 80).  As it still works I have kept it. I am currently running NT
4.0 service pack 5 on my system
and after a brief experience with windows 2000 I am actively seeking a
new OS.

I have tried to specify (blindly I admit) a boot parameter that would at
lest get me to the install screen.  But to no avail.  I have read the
boot parameter information found through the F4 and F5 options on the
boot disk and what I could find in the Debian tutorial and the Guide on
the Debian web site.  I still feel clueless as how to truely use a boot
parameter.  Or how to get to the install screen.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.  I will be checking
my e-mail regularly so I am able to supply
any more information that might be needed.

Thank you in advance,

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