You never said what version of Windows you're trying to dual boot with.
If it's WinXP, you could use a 3rd party bootloader: http://www.multibooters.co.uk/managers.html
I use BootITNG ( not free and butt ugly ) and it is installed into a small partition ( 8MB ). Once installed it takes over the Master Boot Record ( MBR ) and becomes the traffic cop directing you to whatever OS you want to use that day. You will have to change the way you install linux from that point on however because in a default install linux will install grub into the MBR and wipe out your 3rd party bootloader. When you install Mint for example you will have to install Mint's grub into the partition that Mint is installed in. Here's an example:
Let's say you partition your hard drive as follows:
sda2- GAG ( a popular free 3rd party bootloader )
sda3- Linux Swap
sda8- Data ( a common partition that will hold your stuff regardless of what OS you're using )
When you install Mint the very last step ( Step 7 - click on the "Advanced" Button ) it will ask you where you want to install grub. Your answer is sda5. Then go to GAG, point it to sda5 and label it Mint.
If it's Vista, you could have exactly what you described with EasyBCD ( http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1
EasyBCD isn't a bootloader, it's an editor for the Vista bootloader and as such it's installed within Vista and not into it's own partition. You would have to install Linux in the way I described above, putting Mint's grub in sda5 for example, but Vista itself becomes the bootmanager.
The advantage of this approach ( especially if you plan on trying out many distros ) is that each OS becomes a self contained entity. In the future if you no longer want SuSE or Ubuntu you simply format the partition or install another linux over it. Linux distros will come and go but your booloader ( 3rd party or Vista's ) will always be there.