Looking through the site statistics, I noticed a significant number of queries that brought people on here is for “light Linux” and its variants. In case you want a fully fledged Linux distro but is light enough to run on your box no matter the specifications, then check out the following 2 distros
This is basically Ubuntu based on the LXDE. It is very fast and runs on almost any box no matter how old it is. It is a personal favorite that I like to have on my flash drive most of the time for trouble shooting friends’ boxes. It is fully featured and ships with the usual applications that get you flying in no time.
Touted as being “cloud centric”, this distro boasts of three distinct features: efficiency, lightweight and user friendly. It ships with Seismic, Hulu (I really hate that service), Youtube, Gmail and others via Prism. Very much full fledged but lightweight at the same time. There is an in depth review of this distro here.
Of course there are oodles of Linux distros out there, with each person having their personal favorites. The above two are those I personally recommend and do give people to try whenever I have the opportunity. It is also a great idea to have either on a flash drive at all times just in case you need to either show off what Linux is or have to save the day for a friend.