So I am thinking of updating my laptop, I currently run Backtrack, windows 7 and ubuntu off of it. I am planning to run a single distribution off of a significantly smaller SSD, and purchasing 4 Gbs of ram, considering I do 99% of computing on my desktop I am looking for the best performance possible. I would like to Run Dev c++ with wine, temporarily store torrents, and have a few tools like aircrack, and john the ripper, etc.. So basically I'm looking for something with small install size, quick boot time, and something that still fully functional.
I suggest you try to:
1) decide on a package manager that you like (dpkg, pacman, rpm,..)
2) decide on what features the distro comes with (kernel version(s), systemd, ..)
2) decide on a window manager/enviorment you like (openbox, xfce, lxde, awesome, compiz, fluxbox, icewm..)
3) then finally find a distrobution that rolls all the above