Compiling buildroot (version 1507) fixed the network problem. Compact flash and USB memory stick works too.
So I wanted to get Samba on the Verdex. Fetched Buildroot configuration files from http://buildroot.uclibc.org/
It compiled ok, but the executable (smbd) seg-faults. Tried to debug using both Strace and gdb, but neither gave any useful information. Ok, downgraded to Samba version 2.2.9 (it was 3.0.23b that segfaulted). After some fiddling it compiled, and worked too.