apt-get "Unable to find expected entry" errors
I updated to Debian jessie last evening and it went smoothly. This morning I wanted to see if there were any updates (it's been a while since I could expect much in the way of updates since I was running squeeze in oldstable). I encountered an error from apt-get update that I could not figure out even after several searches and playing with configs.
This is what I saw when trying to run apt-get update:
root@beast# apt-get update Ign http://ftp.debian.org jessie InRelease Get:1 http://ftp.debian.org jessie Release.gpg [2,373 B] Get:2 http://ftp.debian.org jessie Release [148 kB] Get:3 http://ftp.debian.org jessie/main i386 Packages [6,769 kB] Get:4 http://ftp.debian.org jessie/contrib i386 Packages [49.6 kB] Get:5 http://ftp.debian.org jessie/non-free i386 Packages [79.7 kB] Fetched 7,048 kB in 27s (259 kB/s) W: Failed to fetch http://ftp.debian.org/debian/dists/jessie/Release Unable to find expected entry 'main/binary-i386 all/Packages' in Release file (Wrong sources.list entry or malformed file) E: Some index files failed to download. They have been ignored, or old ones used instead.
There were others with similar problems but none of their solutions worked for me.
I thought that it have been a temporary problem with one of the apt mirrors but it persisted all day and I tried various mirrors.
Given the error I thought that there must be a problem with my entries in /etc/apt/sources.lists. I tried variations on what I had listed there for jessie. I tried examples from the Debian wiki and from the sources.list man page. None worked.
Eventually I thought to try seeing what other files were under /etc/apt and see if anything jumped out at me as a problem. I had looked already for any problem ones such as under /etc/apt/sources.list.d but I had not started digging through what else was there.
I discovered this file: /etc/apt/apt.conf.
Inside there was this line:
APT::Architectures "i386 all";
It looked innocent enough. I thought I may as well try what happens if I comment it out. With that line commented apt-get update worked again just fine.
I'm not sure where this line came from. I have a feeling I may have added it a long time ago when I was setting up an apt repository for my own packages and forgot about it. It shows that I need to add some comments about when I change configs like that!