My current favorite Emacs*font to work with the new XFT backend is Inconsolata. I’ve tried a few others, but this font is just very clear, not too fat and not too skinny, and it has a slashed zero, as a programming font should.
There’s a debian package too, called “ttf-inconsolata”. ** See update below.
Update: the current debian ttf-inconsolata has a bug somewhere that means you can’t actually use the font. A simple remedy is to install the ttf-inconsolata package and then symlink /usr/share/fonts/truetype/ttf-inconsolata/Inconsolata.ttf to /usr/share/fonts/truetype/ttf-inconsolata/Inconsolata.otf
This may not be technically correct, but it does work.
Also, on my current emacs CVS builds, I need to add the following to my .Xresources to get the anti-aliasing to work reliably: