I actually have run into the same problem, running SLES 9 SP3 on an ESX 3 virtual machine. Originally when I configured the NIC through yast, everything worked fine, it created the /etc/sysconfig/network/ifcfg-eth-<MAC ADDRESS> file and it worked. Then I added in another NIC (virtually) to connect to a virtual switch which I'm using to connect to another SLES 9 SP3 box. I tried configuring that through yast, and for some reason it created the file with the BUS-id, and when I try to ifup eth1, it says there's no configuration file.
Renaming that file to ifcfg-eth1 allowed it to be found, but why does yast do this? Is there a solution to the prior poster's question, can we force yast to use the mac address?
Also, I had a second virtual SLES 9 SP3 box, and on that one, I had decided, hey, maybe if I delete both NIC configurations it will recognize them both correctly when I re-add them. Instead, it name them BOTH in the bus-id style. I figured it might be something to do with VMware, so I also tried deleting both configurations, and re-running the vmware-tools-config.pl, no difference, tried running it again while they were configured incorrectly, no such luck.
Any help would be appreciated, or if there's a link describing the behavior please post if here to help future people looking for answers