Thanks for the link. The only thing that might have had a bearing on the problem was related to turning off DEP. I did that just to try, although it should not come into effect if the WIndows installation isn't utilized. It had no effect. There was one difference however, The computer started to boot from the CD, then just halted displaying only the cursor on a black screen. The cursor was controllable, but there was no response to any keyboard entry.
Booting from either the CD drive or a USB key is not an issue, Linux boots without
any signs of stress.