acithium wrote:what would be a good distro to start with?
Several light, quick distros come to mind.
Peppermint One, Peppermint Ice, Crunchbang 10 alpha.
Puppy Linux 5 may be a good choice.
I would not choose Sidux. Although it meets the light and fast criteria, it is not the best distro for users not completely at home in a terminal.
Any of the ones above are very fast and light on ram usage when installed and, if stripped down, could really fly. All are Debian or Ubuntu based so you have access to the Debian/Ubuntu repos as a source for applications.