This is just a quick post to let everyone know the end of the story. I did send my information to Apple’s Support, and heard back from them that there isn’t a solution other than upgrading my operating system. I did get a new OS provided by Apple, and though there are some other programs I’ll need to upgrade so they work with the newer system, I’ll be able to keep the Airport. See the comments to my previous post for a more thorough discussion. Tomorrow I can put the Airport back online and test it out. But by all accounts, it should work well now that I’m upgraded.
Apple’s support team was responsive and knowledgeable. I only had to be patient while they investigated the issue to rule out another fix. And they would have taken the product back, if necessary. Of course, I’m at the end of my upgrade path for this computer. OS 10.6, the current version, won’t run on my hardware (PowerPC), nor will the latest iMovie, so I’m looking for a version that will run on OS 10.5 and on my computer. At least that does still exist, and I can find it on eBay.
So I dodge the technology bullet this time and am able to keep clunking along (rather well) on my 6-year-old laptop, and the old and the new hardware (see my first post on Technology) can coexist awhile longer.