Everyone wants to be an admin and no one a user!
That will be the downfall of Linux I tell ya!
I imagine netconfig does all of the following:
#checks to see which NIC modules will load
modprobe -t net *
#configures the NIC with an IP and Subnet mask
ifconfig eth0 xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx mask yyy.yyy.yyy.yyy
#configures /etc/resolv.conf with the nameserver you provide
echo xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx > /etc/resolv.conf
#configures your routing tables with a gateway
route add gw ....
#edits your /etc/modules.conf for driver to load at boot
echo "alias eth0 blah" >> /etc/modules.conf
Some of that is helpful to know... but trust me... in Red Hat, netconfig is the best way to configure you NIC and I have never not seen it not work for a standard setup.