I strongly suspect you have an Inspiron 1010 with Intel's gma500, aka, Mini 10, at least the symptoms are exactly the same. The lack of Linux support for gma500 is very well known, and yes, many Linux users have experienced the same problem. Hope that answers the questions. If interested, you can search for more info, there was a lot of discontent when people still hoped that Intel might provide a working driver. Here's a good example.
In case you are also interested in working around the problem, please follow the Wiki Page (or the steps below). Option 1 should do the trick.
Here what should be done:
In a terminal window, run
gksudo gedit /etc/default/grub
Find the following line: GRUB_CMDLINE_DEAULT="quiet splash"
console=tty1 in between the quotes, the end result looking as follows
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash console=tty1"
Save and exit, then run