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lilo (linux only hd -> dos only hd), no solution possible?

Thanks for the help I've gotten on this so far.  Unfortunately it doesn't
seem to be working.  I seem to be caught in a catch-22 situation as far
as getting the system to behave as I want it to.  Here's the situation:

I have one dos/windows only hd.  I have one linux only hd.  I want to be
able to boot up linux and then use lilo to move to dos if I desire.  The
earlier problem was that I had the linux hd as /dev/hda and the dos drive
as /dev/hdb and lilo couldn't get dos to boot off of /dev/hdb.  Apparently
the dos hd has to be /dev/hda (drive C in dos terms) to boot.  So I could
only get into dos by telling my bios to swap the boot sequence around and
boot off of drive "D" (apparently this caused the system to treat the dos
drive as if it were drive C).

To solve this I swapped the hd's around and made the dos drive /dev/hda and
the linux drive /dev/hdb.  However I still want to boot off of the linux
drive, so I set the bios boot sequence so that it would boot from drive D
(/dev/hdb).  Unfortunately this seems to cause the bios to consider
drive C not to be the master drive anymore so that when I try to use lilo
to get into dos I get exactly the same error message as before, a sort of
"disk not available or non-system disk in drive" sort of message.

The catch-22 seems to be: the only way to boot linux from a linux-only hd
as the default when the machine is turned on is to make the linux-only hd
/dev/hda, or to alter the bios boot sequence so that the system treats it
that way (no, I don't want to use a boot floopy to boot up linux either).
At the same time, in order for lilo to boot up a dos-only hd, the dos-only
hd has to be /dev/hda.  Unfortunately both hd's cannot be /dev/hda at the
same time.  So if my analysis is correct, and unless lilo has some way to
make the system change the hd that it considers the primary drive, there
is no way to accomplish what I wish to accomplish.

The problem is that I am a linux newbie and can't tell if I'm making sense
here.  Comments and possible solutions, if any exist, are requested.

Oh, and my latest attempt has netted me a "cannot start virtual terminal"
sort of error message on the linux side, followed by a freeze, so that I
can't boot linux at all.  This raises another interesting issue.  Since
the lilo.config I'm experimenting with now contains lines like
"boot = /dev/hdb1", if I change the drives back the way they were (with the
linux drive as /dev/hda) presumably I won't be able to boot linux because
the lilo.config stuff will point to the wrong place.  On the other hand, I
can't boot into linux now to change the lilo.config file.  So how do you
get into linux to change a lilo.config file when you cannot get into
linux until after you've changed the file? :)  I'm guessing I've got to
resort to the boot floppies at this point, right?  Even if this is the case,
there should be a sort of general solution to this problem, to let you
experiment with the contents of lilo.config safely.  I.E. to write a new
one that doesn't work, and then to be able to get into linux anyway,
without having to resort to a boot floppy, by some command that tells
lilo to boot up using a "safe" backup config file that you know works.
Is this option around and being new I'm just not aware of it?
If you've actually read this far thanks for your attention,

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