The network bug is still active and on my mind. It even lives in a Firefox bookmark folder for active Launchpad bugs.
I've been in touch with the person who appears to be most responsible for the patch that disables the interface in gnome-network-admin. Unfortunately he has been too busy to attend to this situation but I'm going to keep following up with him though.
However, I consider user's experience as one of the top priorities for Ubuntu Studio. As such, the inability to configure an internet connection, especially for those on wifi or without routers, should be viewed as a major regression in my opinion.
Therefore, I am considering switching gnome-network-admin to network-manager which should give access to network interface configuration and also bring Ubuntu Studio closer in line to what Ubuntu desktop are doing as well.
This is not a definitive decision at this point, but I would consider a flawed solution better than a broken solution at this point. However imperfect the situation may be, we simply need to find the most optimal solution to improve usability.