Multi-Booting Linux & Windows with partition hiding
I have dabbled with Linux in the past (Slackware), but am still rather a newbie to Linux. I'm very familiar with NetWare, Windows and hardware, but can use some help on this issue.
I'm trying to multi-boot 4 OS's, 3 of them 64-bit, on an AMD64 w/ 2-GB RAM and 2 x 250GB SATA drives. Both drives are partitioned equally in half, with all (4) Primary partitions, as follows:
disk1/part1: XP Pro 32
disk1/part2: SUSE 9.1 Pro 64
disk2/part1: XP Pro 64
disk2/part2: 2003 Std 64
I used PartitionMagic 8 to partition and format all volumes before installing OS's, having only one HD connected at a time. I installed Linux last, installing GRUB to the root of the Linux partition. Lastly, I connected both HD's at once and installed a boot manager (OSL2000 - osloader.com) from my Server 2003 x64 partition. I have encountered many quirks along the way, and after multiple installs, the above now works to the point that each OS is now useable and booting into them reasonably convenient. I still have two issues.
1) Have to use "Stealth Mode" and disable "Auto-Hide Partitions" with OSL2000; "Stealth" to get any partition to boot (get "Invalid Partition Signature" from the menu - software bug, trying to get them to respond at all for two weeks now), and "disable Auto-Hide" to get any Windows partition to boot at all.
2) GRUB can't boot my Server 2003 x64 partition - I get a "Filesystem type unknown" error. It boots XP 32- and 64-bit OK. Which leads to the heart of the matter:
3) I can't multi-boot and hide my Windows partitions from each other, and we know hoe dirty Windows is under the covers. I can boot any of the 4 OS's now by using OSL2000 to boot Linux (GRUB), and from there choose Linux, or XP32, and via boot.ini, any of the other Windows partitions. Everything is useable, but I can't prevent the XP32 partition from being seen by the other OS's because of it's SYSTEM status, therefore it's prone to future "pollution".
Linux is stable, secure and self-contained, but I'm still forced to know/use Windows. As I've purchased multiple licenses of OSL2000 and they are unresponsive for two weeks, I want to throw it out, but I don't want to throw $$$ at another BootMan unproven for this particular config (OSL2000 was fine under less "aggressive" configs). Does anyone have a suggestion/solution for this scenario?
Thanks in advance.
(Too bad I have to ask - lost the battes to keep NetWare 6 in-house and to bring Linux in on the desktop... although the latter may be a win further on down the road... I like OS's that stay up, stay secure, and don't cross-pollinate under the covers).