What the best way to get around with the font smoothing problem in Debian?
Auto-hinting is not enabled be default. I have had great results by enabling auto-hinting in Xorg and using font families that do well with anti-aliasing. Procedures are below.
- (Optional) Install some pretty fonts (you'll need non-free for mscorefonts):
apt-get install ttf-dejavu ttf-liberation ttf-mscorefonts-installer xfonts-terminus
dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig-config, select Autohinter, Automatic and No
- Restart Xorg
Is there an alternative package to ubuntu-restricted-extras on Debian?
You are looking for
contrib and Debian Multimedia.
(The DFSG is the Debian Free Software Guidelines. See the Debian Social Contract for more information - this is a major differentiating feature between Debian and Ubuntu.)
From the Debian Policy Manual:
The non-free archive area contains supplemental packages intended to
work with the Debian distribution that do not comply with the DFSG or
have other problems that make their distribution problematic. They may
not comply with all of the policy requirements in this manual due to
restrictions on modifications or other limitations.
The contrib archive area contains supplemental packages intended to
work with the Debian distribution, but which require software outside
of the distribution to either build or function.
Every package in contrib must comply with the DFSG.
An important note about
contrib is that the Debian Security team does not handle security for packages from those repositories as they are not part of the official Debian distribution - security is handled by upstream maintainers.
See the Debian Securit FAQ:
Q: How is security handled for contrib and non-free? A: The short
answer is: it's not. Contrib and non-free aren't official parts of the
Debian Distribution and are not released, and thus not supported by
the security team. Some non-free packages are distributed without
source or without a license allowing the distribution of modified
versions. In those cases no security fixes can be made at all. If it
is possible to fix the problem, and the package maintainer or someone
else provides correct updated packages, then the security team will
generally process them and release an advisory.
Multimedia packages that can't be distributed through the normal debian package repos due to licensing of patent issues can be found at the unofficial (and unsupported) Debian Multimedia repository (as pointed out by Juan).
How much functionality can I expect from Ubuntu Tweak on Debian?
None that are supported. Ubuntu Tweak is for Ubuntu. I would highly recommend you do not use it with Debian - things will probably break in novel and interesting ways. There are Debian-ways to modify or configure your system to accomplish the same goals. They're not complicated and you'll pick them quickly.
The defaults are often sensible enough. I rarely feel the need or requirement to deviate from them.