Router Detection Issues

I have a fairly new HP computer. It came with Vista and I received an free Windows 64 bit upgrade. I have tried to install a Lynksys and a Netgear router with no luck. My latest is the Netgear. I have done everything correctly. The modem lights up and the router lights up but no internet access. The only message I get is "Local area connection doesn't have a valid IP configuration. I have no idea what to do. I always thought it was a configuration problem but I just don't know how to change anything.
When I go to my Network and Sharing Center with just my modem connected it says I am connected to Network 2.
I don't understand that either, isn't it supposed to just say Network? As far as I know I don't have two networks going.
My network adapter is Nvidia nForce 10/100 Mbps Ethernet. It is the only listing in Network Adapters in Control Panel. Below is my Network Connection Details with just the modem connected.

Network connection Details

Connection-specific DNS suffix -
Description - Nvidia nForce 10/100 Mbps
Physical address - 00-26-18-99-9B-78
DHCP Enabled - Yes
IPv4 Address -
IPv4 Subnet Mask-
Lease Obtained - Dec 3 2010
Lease Expired - Dec 6 2010
IPv4 Default Gateway -
IPv4 DHCP Server -
IPv4 DNS Server -
IPv4 Wins Server -
NetBios over Tcpip Enabled - Yes
Link-local IPv6Address - fe80::8c6a:eed3:e460: db2d%11
IPv6 Default Gateway -
IPv6 Dns Server -

Any help you can give will be much appreciated. I am absolutly beside myself.
Thank you very much. Jim
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