Well, what can I say. I'm somewhat new to the world of PC's, and for my first PC I got a refurbished dell c640 latitude, and it does everything I need it to and more. I was a Commodore 64 and Amiga user since 1990 and just now in the 21st century, I go the PC route just so I can learn the intel architectures(I have a friend building me a Pentium 3 1ghz(can't beat free now can we?) with a gigabyte of memory, and a Radeon 7000 video card(I know I don't have the latest and greatest hardware, but for my uses these kind of systems fit my uses.
It came with Windows XP SP2 installed, but I did not like the nags, so I use Windows XP for playing with, and learning the OS since I want to be able to develop my code on as many platforms as possible.
However, I did get tired of Microsoft treating me like I was a criminal since the XP came with my Dell machine and I did not trust the Windows Genuine Activation, so I decided that since I ran netbsd on one of my Amigas I decided I would give a few linux distros a try.
Some of the distros I tried:
Debian: Although I had trouble with the distro, it was nice, but too hard to buildG .deb packages
Ubuntu: It has too much of a commercialized feeling, and it was sluggish and had too many dependency problems, and update problems.
Mint: To me, nothing but Ubuntu with more bloat and more commercialized feel than Ubuntu
Fedora Core: I didn't like the package management, and the distro came with things I didn't care for really.
Gnewsense: Great goals, but not too functional and not documented well enough
Gentoo: It was like navigating through a maze
Slackware: I loved it, ran smooth, but I didn't feel like compiling kernels just to have customization at this time
Then I come across Vector. Easy installation, detected everything except my wireless card(I view that as a security feature since I never trusted anything wi-fi), simple packaging, and I love the choices the installer gives of how you want the system to boot.
I also use MuSiX which is a Live CD distro which deals with mostly music production software and has a low latency kernel in it, along with Rosegarden, Audour, Linux Multi Media Studio, Soundtracker, Jack Daemon which I heard about on a radio show.
And sometimes I'll play with Dyne:Bolic another live cd but not as feature packed as MuSiX.
I'll have to say that Vector, MuSiX and Dyne have been the ones that have worked for me.
I also like web browser called Dillo, a no frills browser which is lightweight and gets the job done.