Suppose you want to compile an application that need some library file such as libcurl.so but you don’t know the exact packages name. Sure, you can guess by using apt-cache search but the result might not be pleasant. (apt-cache search result when combined with file name will –usally– return empty result).
Here, I’ll show you other alternative to apt-cache search to search packages name who provide certain files/libraries.
apt-get install apt-file
apt-file --package-only search libcurl.so
that command will search which packages from repository that provide libcurl.so file. Use –package-only to only package name, without this option, the result will also include file name and directory name inside packages (which –in my opinion– quite distracting). Oh, almost forgot, apt-file can be used by non-root users.
man apt-file for more complete usage!