The last time I bought a motherboard was five years ago. It was a SOYO and is still in use in my 1.3 GHz Celeron. I couldn't be more satisfied. I wasn't looking for that specific brand, but it was the only one available that had everything I needed at the time (for example, I needed an ISA slot).
My other desktop has an OEM ASUS (HP version). It has been fine and easily accepted a major CPU upgrade (from a Sempron 3200 to an Athlon 64 X2 4200). The HP version did cripple the BIOS, though. For example, there is no option to boot from USB.
Both of these are Linux friendly. My computers don't have anything fancy like RAID.