I don't understand why my apt-cache would be empty, as there is a gazillion packages installed on my system (like all Ubuntu systems). I tried installing a random program and running it thinking that it might just show temporary packages, but got the same result.

  • Did you try to execute apt-get update to update the package index? – Thomas Aug 27 '16 at 9:35
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    In any case the error message is quite unhelpful. Instead of being E: no packages found it should be something like E: missing operand package name or similar that might give a hint that it's on the command line that something is missing, not on the system. – Bakuriu Aug 27 '16 at 18:54
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    What exactly you ran? apt-cache show sdjaf shows "E: No packages found", because sdjaf isn't a package that exist in the package lists. – Braiam Aug 27 '16 at 19:05

The apt-cache show (or apt show) command needs an argument: the name of a package:

$ apt-cache show gimp
Package: gimp
Priority: optional
Section: universe/graphics
Installed-Size: 16188
Maintainer: Ubuntu Developers <ubuntu-devel-discuss@lists.ubuntu.com>
Original-Maintainer: Ari Pollak <ari@debian.org>
Architecture: amd64
Version: 2.8.18-1

... and many more lines

Perhaps you want apt list to see available packages or apt list --installed for installed packages?

  • lol, was just looking at some notes i made and it appears i was confused about the purpose of the program due to some shitty note taking...this thread should be removed – thinksinbinary Aug 27 '16 at 10:11
  • Hehe well I guess others could make the same mistake @thinksinbinary – Zanna Aug 27 '16 at 10:20
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    @thinksinbinary Somehow this made it to the Hot Network Questions list, so apparently enough find it interesting... – Izkata Aug 27 '16 at 20:12

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