Fixing the E: The method driver /usr/lib/apt/methods/https could not be found Error on Debian Systems

When working with Debian-based systems such as Ubuntu, you may encounter an error message that reads "E: The method driver /usr/lib/apt/methods/https could not be found". This error indicates that APT, the package management tool, is trying to access an HTTPS source in the sources.list file but cannot find the necessary method driver to handle HTTPS URIs.

<strong>Understanding the Error</strong>

APT (Advanced Packaging Tool) is responsible for handling installations, updates, and removals of software on Debian-based systems. It typically uses URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers) in the /etc/apt/sources.list file, or in associated files under /etc/apt/sources.list.d/, to locate the repositories from which software packages are downloaded.

When APT encounters a repository starting with "https://", it needs to use the HTTPS method to fetch packages securely. If the apt-transport-https package is not installed, APT does not have the necessary driver to understand and handle the "https://" protocol, resulting in the error you see.

<strong>How to Solve the Error</strong>

Here, we will walk through the steps to resolve this issue. Since you are curious about using <code>htop</code>, which is a system-monitoring utility, I'll also show you how to monitor the installation process. However, <code>htop</code> is not directly used to solve the error but can help you observe the resource usage during the fix.

<ol>
<li><strong>Open a Terminal</strong><br />
First, you need to open your terminal. You can do this by pressing <kbd>Ctrl</kbd> + <kbd>Alt</kbd> + <kbd>T</kbd> or by searching for "Terminal" in your applications menu.
</li>

<li><strong>Update the APT Repository List</strong><br />
Sometimes the issue can simply be resolved by updating the list of repositories. However, if your sources all use HTTPS, this might not work until you have installed the required package:<br />
<code>sudo apt update</code>
</li>

<li><strong>Install the <code>apt-transport-https</code> Package</strong><br />
This is the main step to resolve the error. Install the necessary package by running:<br />
<code>sudo apt-get install apt-transport-https</code><br />
This package provides the necessary method driver for APT to handle https URIs.
</li>

<li><strong>Monitoring with htop (Optional)</strong><br />
If you want to monitor the progress and system load of the installation process, you can install and use <code>htop</code> as follows:<br />
First, open another terminal window and install <code>htop</code> if it's not already installed:<br />
<code>sudo apt-get install htop</code><br />
Then run <code>htop</code> by typing:<br />
<code>htop</code><br />
This will open a system monitor that lets you keep track of CPU and memory usage, process status, and more, in real-time.
</li>

<li><strong>Re-run Update and/or Upgrade</strong><br />
After installing the <code>apt-transport-https</code> package, rerun the update command to ensure your package lists are up to date:<br />
<code>sudo apt update</code><br />
If you have pending upgrades, execute:<br />
<code>sudo apt upgrade</code>
</li>

<li><strong>Test APT with an HTTPS Source</strong><br />
To test whether APT can now access repositories over HTTPS, you can either add an HTTPS source to your <code>sources.list</code> file or run an install command for a package known to be in an https repository.
</li>
</ol>

<strong>Conclusion</strong>

Solving the "E: The method driver /usr/lib/apt/methods/https could not be found" error is generally straightforward and simply requires the installation of the <code>apt-transport-https</code> package. By following the steps above, you can ensure that your Debian system can securely access and install packages from HTTPS sources.

If you encounter further issues or have any additional questions, please feel free to leave a comment or reach out for support from the community.

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