Ok, I installed wordpress on our webserver and everything went pretty well, as in exactly like all the other times I have installed wordpress. I went did some small customizations in the admin area (changed admin password and theme only) and everything worked. I clicked on the view site button and the page looked exactly as I had wanted it to. but when you click on any link it just reloads the homepage, reagrdless of permalink settings or theme.
So at first I thought it might be some obvious setting in the php.ini but after doing my best to mimmick the live environment locally I still had gained no ground.