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problem with s3 trio 64 and xfree86

I have an older IBM server with s3 trio 64 "onboard".

If I install Mandrake or Ubuntu, I get a usable X-server (so I know it's possible). 

I've installed several versions of Debian (most recently the latest "stable" version), but installer sees the graphics hardware as VESA (VGA mode) and none of the S3 servers I've tried works at all.

Is there anything about Debian that would help me understand and workaround this situation? I would really prefer to use Debian if possible. 


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