"Is there anybody out there?" - Don't think so, the street looks totally deserted from where I'm sitting!
Firstly, make sure that all folders that you want to have available over the network (in both PCs) are set as "Shared" by right clicking and selecting the Sharing option. I don't have Vista but you may also have to set Permissions to allow the remote PC to access the files. It is usually simpler if you use the same Username & Password to log in to both PCs.
Once the sharing has been set up, go into Network (My Network Places). Windows 8 should find the remote PC and double clicking its icon should display the Shared Folders. In Vista you may have to expand the folder tree in Windows Explorer to locate the remote PC (Windows 8) and then select it to show the Shared Folders.