This section contains information to help with discovering and using software from an end-user perspective.
The recommended way to install new software on Debian is by using packages from the official repositories. These repositories should contain most of the software you will want to install, allowing you not to rely on external sources.
To achieve this, Debian has several tools dedicated to Package Management, which allow you to manage the APT repositories (main, contrib, non-free), and to search and select software to be installed.
Provided you know what you are doing, you might also get software by :
- building the software from sources.
- installing packages from unofficial repositories/websites.
- getting binaries
- deploying software with containers such as Docker
- using Flatpak or other package managers such as Nix/Guix.
writing your own!
There are several ways to learn what software included in Debian can cover your specific needs.
with Debtags search
You can search for applications in Debtags database thanks to tag filters called facets.
Some facets are targeted at specific software domains (i.e: sound, web, game, office, x11). Some others, like field and use, or works-with and works-with-format are more general but might also be useful.
role::program might also be useful when you want to eliminate packages which cover your field of research but are not applications (packages such as documentation, libraries, etc., which are not meant to contain programs).
Same goes for scope, which isn't obvious, but helps to distinguish the main applications from its secondary tools (that could be helper scripts which do not make sense to be used as standalone).
Remember to put tag: keyword in front of your full tag name (i.e: tag:use::editing AND tag:works-with::software:source)
Be aware some more tagging work is still needed (some facets are lacking and some packages tags are unreviewed or still need to be assigned), so you might not be able to find what you expect.
You can aim broad, then refine your search with further filters provided on the right column.
by other means
packages.debian.org (sometimes, you will find alternatives to a software in the «Similar packages» section.)
package managers (software is sorted according to categories, some package managers like gnome-software provide further suggestions by organizing differently)
- this wiki and other web pages
for some time, interesting new packages were mentioned in Debian Weekly Newsletter.
You can see full list of packages coming with Debian Stable here
WhyTheName, because we all wonder where does software names come from