I have been using the Kernel-Howto, which seems wildly out of date, to try to create a new kernel. I am running debian woody on a pentium pro, and trying to make a 2.4.18 kernel. The problem is that 'make config' doesn't ask me about certain devices, such as my sound card, (an old soundblaster 16) so there is no obvious way to make kernel modules for the necessary drivers. I am obviously missing something really big here. Basically my 2.2.whatever kernel has a bunch of modules, and those don't seem to get compiled when I run 'make modules', and I don't understand why. Thanks for dealing with newbie crap.
By the way, I am pretty much following the HowTo verbatim, so if you are wondering what steps I am taking, those are them.