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I tried installing Steam today on my laptop, and to no surprise it's broken and needs tweaking just like every single time I have ever installed Steam on Linux.

In my process of trying to fix the missing dependencies, I managed to completely and utterly break my apt-get functionality it appears.

Here's what is going on.

sudo apt-get install cowsay

which pops out the lovely and rather completely useless message:

Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
cowsay is already the newest version.
You might want to run 'apt-get -f install' to correct these:
The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 libllvm3.6:i386 : Depends: zlib1g:i386 (>= 1:1.2.0) but it is not going to 
be installed
 libpciaccess0:i386 : Depends: zlib1g:i386 (>= 1:1.2.3.3) but it is not going to be installed
E: Unmet dependencies. Try 'apt-get -f install' with no packages (or specify a solution).

So I do the next logical step, the console is telling me to run:

    sudo apt-get -f install

Alright, well try that. Nope, I'm just going to give you the illusion that I'm working and make you mad:

Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
Correcting dependencies... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  zlib1g:i386

The following NEW packages will be installed:
  zlib1g:i386

0 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 0 to remove and 13 not upgraded.
6 not fully installed or removed.

Need to get 0 B/52.9 kB of archives.

After this operation, 182 kB of additional disk space will be used.

Do you want to continue? [Y/n] y

(Reading database ... 386548 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../zlib1g_1%3a1.2.8.dfsg-2ubuntu1_i386.deb ...
Unpacking zlib1g:i386 (1:1.2.8.dfsg-2ubuntu1) ...
dpkg: error processing archive /var/cache/apt/archives/zlib1g_1%3a1.2.8.dfsg-2ubuntu1_i386.deb (--unpack):
 trying to overwrite shared '/usr/share/doc/zlib1g/changelog.Debian.gz', which is different from other instances of package zlib1g:i386

Errors were encountered while processing:
 /var/cache/apt/archives/zlib1g_1%3a1.2.8.dfsg-2ubuntu1_i386.deb

E: Sub-process /usr/bin/dpkg returned an error code (1)

At this point, I feel like I've tried everything. I followed a pretty lengthy guide on try reconfiguring my dpkg, using apt-get clean, and so on. Rebooting has done nothing for me.

I'm completely lost. I'd just reinstall Linux but I don't want to backup all my work just because Steam broke my freaking apt-get.

1

I just fixed it. What I had to do was outlined in this post: Broken dependencies due to libjackd

So I went to /usr/share/doc and then took zlib1g and zlib1g-dev and renamed both with a .old on the back. This allowed me to do my

apt-get -f install

and things seem to be happy now.

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