Thanks to all who helped diagnose my cockpit troubles with burning the download. However I am still stuck. Here is what I have done:
Finally found the "how to do it right" info I needed for burning the download at:https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BurningIsoHowto
1. Insert a blank CD into your burner. A "CD/DVD Creator" or "Choose Disc Type" window will pop up. Close this, as we will not be using it.
2. Find the downloaded ISO image in the file browser (available at Places $B"*(B Home menu on top of the screen.) Right click on the ISO image file and choose Write to Disc and wait for burning to complete."
So running ubuntu on the new pc I downloaded kubuntu 7.10 and linuxmce 7.10.
Both ended up on desktop as a single iso file.
I used procedure above to burn each of these, using the lowest speed setting available as recommended to me (4x): kubuntu to a cd and linuxmce to a dvd.
In answer to the qustion previously asked, yes I do have the bios set to boot from CD first.
Next to prove in the ability to burn useable boot disk I installed the kubuntu.
Encountered some problems with graphics - it boots up gives me the initial screen with the install choices, I press enter to go with the first choice, then get blue screen - graphics are gone.
Try to get into terminal mode with CTRL ALT FN1 - get weird display (looks like a monitor test pattern) CTRL ALT FN7 takes me back to blue screen.
Using KVM switch I flip over to windows box and back to kubuntu box -- for about 1 sec I can see that I have a desktop in kubuntu then it goes all blue again.
By flipping back and forth and working in the ~1sec window when I have visibility into the kubuntu desktop I eventually get through the system, hardware, display menus to change monitor settings until I get display.
Then continue with display working to click install icon on desktop, answer install questions, and kubuntu proceeds to install.
kubuntu working fine - remove cd, can boot from hard disk everything works.
So now I put new linuxmce 7.10 boot disk into cd/dvd and reboot from the dvd.
Yes the bios are set to choose the cd first.
It boots up gives me the initial screen with the install choices, I press enter to go with the first choice, then get blue screen - graphics are gone.
Try to get into terminal mode with CTRL ALT FNn nothing happens, try shift 1 to 0 (which I saw something about somehere in the linuxmce help) - nothing.
I try the trick that worked for me with the kubuntu installation namely: Using KVM switch I flip over to windows box and back to kubuntu box -- this time it dosen't work -- I just have a blue screen - no desktop.
This is exatly the same behavior I was getting with the linuxmce 7.10 boot dvd that my son burned for me.
Need some help for what to to next to solve this puzzle.
I can download and install kubuntu, cannot install linuxmce dvd - losing graphics.