I've set up NIS and remotely mounted homedirs several times.
The information above is good stuff. The bresink.de site is really good for the NIS information! But there are some gotchas with NIS.
(I have yet to test these problems with 10.2, but I think the problems would still apply, as they are problems from the server side)
On the Mac side, only pull NIS maps that you intend to use. Also (as dumb as this sounds) only pull maps that the server offers. Under IRIX (Silicon Graphics) machines, you can control which maps get exported by editing a makefile. (Linux should be similar). If you export maps "passwd", "group", "hosts" and your Mac is looking for "passwd", "group", "hosts" and "netgroup".. the Mac will choke, and possibly not boot properly.
So, make sure that if you need a map on your mac, that the NIS server actually serves it.
Production Engineer for VFX.