The situation I am having is that , that is not working. I have even attempted to run a live CD from a thumb drive of LinuxMint, I am getting to the load screen with the pretty options. Once I attempt to load the system I am prompted to a black CMD Prompt screen with a blinking cursor icon... The same thing that happened with Ubuntu.
That could happen if your graphics adapter can't handle the X system of that distro. The some happened to me on a few occasions with ubuntu.
Typ: lspci -v on your system to read what it says about your video card.
You can try out different WMs with your preferred OS and see if that will help. In fact give debian squeeze a try. It allows you choose different DEs. Different DEs, customized X system.