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I am trying to install ia32-libs on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (x86). I enabled all the repository sources but I'm receiving the error message below:

~$ sudo apt-get install ia32-libs  
Reading package lists... Done  
Building dependency tree         
Reading state information... Done  
Package ia32-libs is not available, but is referred to by another package.  
This may mean that the package is missing, has been obsoleted, or  
is only available from another source  

E: Package 'ia32-libs' has no installation candidate

output of sudo apt-cache policy ia32-libs

  Installed: (none)  
  Candidate: (none)  
  Version table:  

output of cat /etc/apt/sources.list (removed similar hyperlinks)

deb precise restricted main multiverse universe  
deb-src precise restricted main multiverse universe #Added by software-properties  
deb precise-security main restricted universe multiverse  
deb-src precise-security main restricted universe multiverse #Added by software-properties  
deb precise-updates main restricted universe multiverse  
deb-src precise-updates main restricted universe multiverse #Added by software-properties
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Did you run sudo apt-get update after enabling the software sources (repositories)? If not, you should try this and then run sudo apt-get install ia32-libs again. Also, what is the output of apt-cache policy ia32-libs? And what is the output of cat /etc/apt/sources.list? This will provide detailed information about what software sources are enabled and how they are enabled. You should edit your question to add this information. (Code, like text from the Terminal, can be highlighted as such with the <$> button in the editing toolbar, which makes it easier to read.) – Eliah Kagan May 29 '12 at 22:34
Just to have mentioned it: ia32-libs will not be available for a i386 32-bit Ubuntu (it already is 32-bit). – Takkat May 30 '12 at 6:25
up vote 4 down vote accepted

That package is only needed when running certain 32 Bit applications on a 64 Bit version of Ubuntu. On 32 Bit / i386 architecture everything (applications, libraries etc) is 32 Bit.

Since you are not trying to install that package for the sake of doing so, what software are you trying to install and what guide or how to do you use?

share|improve this answer
@Eliah, You are correct. I ran apt-get-update and saw the repositories being updated (I posted their output). The original issue is that a while back I installed the ia32-libs on another 64-bit box and didn't realize it was not needed here in the 32-bit one. The software I was installing is SQL Anywhere 12. – Dcm1405 May 30 '12 at 14:45
Games like Enemy territory needs 32-bit libraries..... – Ravi Jul 26 '12 at 9:04

You can fix this removing system package cache

rm -f /var/lib/apt/lists/* 
apt-get clean all
apt-get update
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