okay, so no luck with the freebsd but...
i've gotten it working! i did a fresh install of debian unstable last night, built kernel 2.6.2 fresh today, installed the drivers, changed the config and it worked! i've even got it working in twin view now. my setup has changed so much with the clean installs that i'm not sure exactly what caused the fix. i will post all my relevent config files for those of you still having this trouble. please let me know if you have any more questions.