......also BE SURE to install the drivers as directed by the card manufacturer. I used a $4.95 Belkin 10/100 card in my comp with w/98SE and it worked just fine. No issues whatsoever- I network it with XP and Linux.. HOWEVER, I had another brand card in there before it, and it WOULD NOT work- PERIOD. I tried installing the driver this way, that way, uninstalled the card, reinstalled in a different slot, etc. etc. It just wouldn't work. Plus there are so many CHEAP cards, I just wasn't going to keep fooling with it.
Make sure there are no IRQ conflicts- 98SE manages all that stuff differently than XP does. Actually, now that I think about it, my FIRST card that wouldn't work conflicted with my sound card. Check the device manager for any conflicts on any other IRQ's (sound card, etc.). My current NW card conflicts with the DOS emulator IRQ of my sound card, but I disabled that. Small trade off, and I'm not going to NOT have WIndows manage the PCI steering and IRQ's just to make sure that DOS sound blaster emulation works. Don't have DOS, so who really cares.