I had exactly the same problem you describe when I installed SUSE 9.2 Pro on a new Toshiba laptop. All the hardware worked fine under WinXP, but no matter what I did to configure the LAN card on SUSE LX, I could never get it to work.
I finally decided that the LAN code was broken right "outta the box", so I got onto my Win98 system, found an RPM distro site, downloaded the latest kernel code update available, burned it to a CD, installed in on my laptop using YAST, rebooted, and Viola !!
I fired up the browser, typed www.eBay.com
as a URL, and then I was asked if I wanted to accept cookies (I was now communicating). No more reconfiguring was necessary. Then I signed onto YOU and downloaded all the system updates from the ULM distro site.