So, reinstalling Linux is so far a t-r-double-l trial: in adding the floppy drive back in the machine, I apparently upset the machine's delicate internal Feng Shui, and now it doesn't see any disks at all. It claims to see the floppy drive, but won't boot from a disk I put in, just sit there. If I take the disk out, I get the standard "Non-system disk" error I wish I could've left blissfully forgotten.
And that's not even to the actual Linux part yet. So, trial. Yes.
[Update 6:34: Seems I forgot the ever-important whinge-in-public step.]