Thanks for clarifiying the GRuB questions.
When I boot that NEC with the .iso installed on it , all I get is a cursor. I swapped the drive to another machine and it tells me BOOT DISK ERROR, Please ENTER .. etc..
It is ... ummm 6:30 am EST (DST) here. Have to get ready for Sunday duties I'll be back at this soon. It looks very promising and ran quite fast from the CD so I can imagine that it is very thrifty on a real install.