I'm building a low cost system for my niece with an AMD X2 4000 or 4400 processor. I was going to use the Biostar 550 MB (there's a rebate) when I realized it it not certified for Vista. I've already got an OEM copy of Home Premium. Do I have to have a Vista certified motheboard? If so, any recommendations.
I would say no. I googled this http://www.techarp.com/showarticle.aspx?artno=396 and at the bottom of the page it says what the certified logo means. I'm running Vista on a board that is no certified and its fine. There is sometimes lack of support from the maker of the board with some of the software. (like temp monitors stuff like that but the drives should be fine)
Do I have to have a Vista certified motheboard? If so, any recommendations.
Ok, my take on this. Having a Vista certified motherboard, or anything else for that matter, means you have better odds that it will work with Vista. Unfortunatley, as the article points out, something may work with Vista but not have Vista specific drivers. My old ASUS A8N32-SLI Deluxe motherboard works with Vista, but there is no guarentee that it would work. Even though it works, there are no Windows specific drivers, so it may or may not have all the functionality of a fully Vista certified board that does have drivers. Until M$ puts real teeth into their certification program, the Vista seal of approval may be better then a kick in the teeth and telling you that you're on your own, but not much.
My best advice would be to check around and find out if other people are successfully using the board with Vista and go from there.