Missing libcap.so.2


I’m not a linux expert (getting close though) but can someone give me a hint why I can’t load atom? This is the error. I’ve installed atom 404 on a new installation of ubuntu 14.04.

/usr/share/atom/atom: error while loading shared libraries: libcap.so.2: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory


I have only limited experience with Linux, but this kind of thing always sounds like a permission issue to me.
The second most common: that file is in a different folder because the installed library wasn’t the exact same that atom was expecting or a different version or some such nonsense.


And you do have the libcap2 APT package installed?


That fixed it. Thank you thank you. I wonder why the .deb installation missed this?


It’s not listed in the package dependencies, so that should be fixed… I’ll create an issue on github


Ah, I see you already did… You should probably open it again, detailing that it isn’t listed in the packages dependencies.


What’s the libcap2 package belong to?
I never knowingly installed it on my Ubuntu machine and had no problem installing the atom .deb package.


From the debian archive

Libcap implements the user-space interfaces to the POSIX 1003.1e capabilities available in Linux kernels. These capabilities are a partitioning of the all powerful root privilege into a set of distinct privileges.

Looks like it’s useful for a lot of packages, so that’s probably why you already had it installed.


This is one of the two things that keep annoying me about Linux: The permissions. Nothing is intuitive. You try to build something or install something under your own home folder and it still fails because some sub directory doesn’t let you write to it so you need to sudo that shit.

People say it makes Linux more safe, but at some point I’m happy to give up some security for a little less pain and more usefulness.

The other thing is such random libraries that may or may not be needed at any given time, and may or may not be installed.


I’ve never run into your first problem (I’ve only used Linux for a year and a half though). If the build process is well-designed, and you run it as your own user (e.g. make instead of sudo make) the application and all its (sub)directories should be owned by you.

I’m intrigued though by your second point. What is it about those libraries that you don’t like?


I suppose the fact that they are non-descriptive and dependencies are never neatly packed together and rarely automatically installed.
At least on Windows if a program can’t install, it will tell you graphically what’s going on and most of the time even install that dependency for you.

While that happens on Linux as well, as you say, if the installer is well-designed, most often it isn’t and then you get some long-ass cryptic error stack (node-gyp, anyone?) that you have to have a fair amount of experience with to remotely understand.

I want Linux to become more visual and user friendly, less terminal-heavy.


Will do.

I have always logged in as root (40 years) and always will. It’s amazing how nutso people get about this. Posts talking about running as root will be deleted from forums. It has happened to me twice. I find it strange to censor this when you can talk about how to build an atomic bomb.

The worst that happens is you get annoying warnings saying you are an idiot. I have to use the flag --unsafe when installing binaries using npm. I can’t think of any other problems I’ve had. In 40 years I have never typed rm -rf /, although I have thought of trying this before wiping my system. I have a feeling it won’t let me. I’ve read this somewhere.

Also, I constantly backup everything that matters. When I have to re-install my system from scratch it takes me about an hour.

(I would appreciate it if no one lectures me on this. I’ve heard it all.)


I think you’re right on that one. I have no state secrets or weird private shit on my linux laptop, and also back up anything critical to me.
There is the concern about malware tracking my passwords and all, but I don’t see how that won’t be a risk under a non-root account as well.

I’ll try go the root adventure for a while and see how that goes.


You can start by just using sudo -i.

Edit: I should note that I don’t use other logins. I’m always on a one-user system. One of the lectures I’m given is that root will create files owned by root that will lock out other users. But I don’t see how this could be any different than creating files with other non-root users.


Talking about atomic bombs will not be tolerated!!!1! :wink:


Atomic bomb… hehe giggle