That's good to know about Mint writing to NTFS. I am new to Mint, and never realized that there were drivers for any flavor of Linux that could do that. I stand corrected.
Regarding ext2fsd, I tried that when I got Vista a while back (it's been over a year, now), and it didn't work at all for me. Like I said, though, ext2ifs worked fine after a reboot. It also appears
as though ext2ifs has a new version that's been updated to work with Vista.
One more caveat about using ext2 - I'm not sure if this is an issue with Mint or not, but I know it is a problem when booting into SuSE. Because Windows sets the hardware clock to local time, when you boot into Linux, fsck detects an error ("last write time is in the future") on your ext2 partition. fsck will then fix the problem, but it can take a while to do so, so booting can be considerably slower than it would otherwise be.[/edit]