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shlibs files map shared library names and versions (sonames) to depen-
dencies suitable for a package control file. There is one entry per
line. Blank lines are not allowed. Lines beginning with an # character
are considered commentary, and are ignored. All other lines must have
[type:] library version dependencies
The library and version fields are whitespace-delimited, but the depen-
dencies field extends to the end of the line. The type field is
optional and normally not needed.
See the Debian Policy Manual for further details.
The shlibs file for a typical library package, named libcrunch1, that
provides one library whose soname is libcrunch.so.1, might read
libcrunch 1 libcrunch1 (>= 1.2-1)
The dependencies must mention the most recent version of the package
that added new symbols to the library: in the above example, new sym-
bols were added to version 1.2 of libcrunch. This is not the only rea-
son the dependencies might need to be tightened; again, see the Debian
Policy Manual for details.
Debian Project 2008-02-17 deb-shlibs(5)