Netgear MA 401? I think is what it is, its the Netgear wifi B card, works great, lasts long time.
Your problem doesn't seem to be wifi card, but I am a newbie as well, it seems to be related to the kernel reconfig. I don't know if your card requires it, but the orinoco drivers that came with RH9 worked with my card listed above. It did take some configuring from the "Network Configuration" gui.
You using Grub? I would look at the /boot/grub/grub.conf file and see if your "root=" location is set correctly. I screwed mine up so I have to type this in every time I reboot.