Personally, i don't think there's too much hassle networking with a cross over cable, certainly, a hubs nice - but if you've got 2 machines and you use 1 of them to connect to the internet, sticking a x over cable between them is convenient enough - where's the headache?
Ghost_25inf - If you can't identify a nic, try looking for the fcc (Federal Communications Commision) id on the card - when you find this you can run it through the fcc database at , or you could try searching for the OUI (Organizationally Unique Identifier) here -