For the 2.6.x.x series kernels, I much prefer "make xconfig" to
"make menuconfig" as far as being able to see the options in
a better layout, and the help is all on the right hand side with
the options. You can't make your own kernel based upon some
other computers hardware, or usage preferences. The best
thing to do is to build your kernel slowly, not in a hurry, and to
use Google <Linux>
to lookup anything you don't understand.
For those options which you don't have a clue about, you can
usually select M (module) and it will load if you need it, but
not if you don't.
Kwan Lowe's Kernel Build HOW-TO
is good, and the instructions
that Linus Torvald includes in the kernel sources are excellent.
You should definitely read ./linux-2.6.13/README as well as any
of the files under ./linux-2.6.13/Documentation/ that apply to
Most people today are reluctant to read, and I know it's not as
fun as "jumping in with both feet," but in the long run it's good
to learn and get a solid foundation.