I tried to install Mandrake 9.2 in a loopback (virtual) partition on my FAT32 Win95 single partition on my oldish laptop Toshiba Portege 3110.

In short, after a good installation (repeated also a few times with different parameters to be sure), the linux kernel goes in panic at the time of loading!

Full details can be found here:

My question is:
- Has anyone of you succeded to installa Mandrake 9.2 in loopback?
- It appears also Mandrake 9.1 had a problem with dependencies which screwed up the loopback mode. Has anyone tried that too?

Can anyone suggest alternative simple solutions?
I would like Linux on my laptop, mainly to use my USB port with my photocam (via gphoto2 e gtkam), and would like to have the freedom to put the linux images into a cd-rom in case I need space on the hard disk...
[ I am exclusively looking for hard-disk loopback installations and NOT Linux booting from CD, as the CD is external and I do not bring it often with me ...]

Can anyone reccomend alternative distributions with similar characteristics (support for USB and gphoto2) ? Would be nice something close to the Mandrake GUI installer, where with the right choice of packages I can have all I need with less than 400 MB... but working of course!

P.S.: I also posted a bug report on the Mandrake web site, but I am not sure how fast they are in dealing with these reports...