newbie - permissions on files - hzlp please

I m not a Linux user (sory for that) but would appreciate some help with the
folowing problem:

Desktop running xp, with large hard disk and 2 partitionns.
The pc was getting very unstable (rebooting without any reason) and I
decided to reinstall xp on the c: partition.
From the original recover cd(targa), the "image" was sent to the c drive,
but the new image does not boot correctly (windows starting screen, options
standard, safe mode etc..), whatever choice = the pc reboots while trying to
start a session
note: trying to reinstall agian or using Norton ghost boot cd (I have a
backup on d:) , the pc starts reading either cd and before executing the
install or recover, I get the famous BLUE screen
conclusion = no way to access c: or d: drive

With my notebook, I made a bootable Linux cd image "SLAX BOOT CD" and this
works fine to start the pc.
Under "Konqueror", system, storage media I can see the content of my old C
and D drives
I wanted to use this "Linux Session" to make copies of important data from
my c and d drive to a large usb external hard disk

Whatever I try under "permissions", (for the whole drive, a specific
directory, or a file), using read write exec permissions to either user and
or group and others,
I get the error message " COULD NOT CHANGE PERMISSIONS FOR ....."

I am sure there must be a way to allow me to copy files and folders but
cannot find out what I am doing wrong.
Any tip is most welcome (excuse my poor English, French is my mother tongue)

Thank you and have a merry Christmas