Thanks for posting back!
As I earlier suspected, it was probably a hardware (software, too) that Vista just didn't like with the computer it was installed on.
The "graphics user interface" (GUI) that is built into Windows Vista requires almost twice as much memory to run to Microsoft specs than what Windows XP did. This is about 768 mbs while XP only required 256 mbs. This doesn't mean that Vista or XP couldn't be installed on a system with smaller amounts of ram......only that that was the recommended specifics. Also one has to look at the hardware and software that was to be installed on the system.
XP was/is notorious for its driver issues and vista is even worse. Also one must include the fact that there are several different Vista programs and each one has more or less installed applications than the next one....all of which require applicable amounts of memory to operate on. There are some laptops that are being manufactured and sold with only 512 mbs of ram with Vista installed. But they are so slow that the people who buy them immediately do a memory upgrade.
I personally have installed xp on a system with 32 mgs of memory and have it run fairly decently...still slow but it ran!