Now you can 'rest' until I need guidance for my Linux install!
For the installation of Linux, I'd recommend you unplug the SATA drive with Win7 on it - that way there's no chance of partitioning the wrong drive or of LILO, GRUB or something being written to it and screwing up the Windows boot. Afterwards you could add the Linux entry to the Windows boot menu using EasyBCD.
Or give Wubi
a try, (which you can also add to the start menu, looking at EasyBCD).
But over to someone more knowledgeable than me for Linux.