Check how knoppix runs, it might be a dodgy driver
xp x64 has installed fine.. guessing its a fault with Vista somewhere :(
Can now at least back stuff up and reinstall either Vista or XP
Well... last time I saw that one, the consensus was that it's almost always a hardware problem... and that it happens with driver X rather than driver Y doesn't stop it being a hardware problem i.e. X is just exposing the issue.
[It's been a while though so you might find other ideas, especially since it's Vista]