Thanks guys, everything's fine now. Just got the netbook back and this time it works OK for some reason. I didn't have to do anything at all, just plug the modem in and voila. What is this I don't even.
I'm actually typing this post from my netbook right now.
And yeah, what I was refering to definitely wasn't a router (I actually bought a wireless router just now, but I digress). And I did reset it after re-plugging, just to clarify. Oh well, as long as it's working correctly I have no reason to complain. Time to enjoy some mobile internets.