Fix: trying to overwrite ‘/usr/share/accounts/services/google-im.service’ installing kubuntu-desktop

I have an Ubuntu 16.04 desktop installation with Unity and wanted to try KDE, so I ran sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop. apt failed with the following message:

trying to overwrite '/usr/share/accounts/services/google-im.service', which is also in package account-plugin-google [...]

The original issue at Ask Ubuntu has several suggestions but none of them worked – any apt commands returned the same requirement to run apt-get -f install, which in turn gave the original “trying to overwrite” error message. synaptic also wasn’t installed so I couldn’t use it (or install it, as all other apt installation commands failed.)

I was able to get the dpkg database out of its bad state and continue to install kubuntu-desktop by running the following:

dpkg -P account-plugin-google unity-scope-gdrive
apt-get -f install

(Link to original Kubuntu bug for posterity:

This post was cross-posted to The Linux Experiment, where I haven’t written anything for months.


  1. Jake – this thank you message is for your amazing blog entry regarding restoring a Lenovo OS from it’s recovery image. I followed your steps and you just saved me so much time from downloading each and every driver needed for my Lenovo.

    Sorry to post here – but comments are disabled on that post. Just wanted to thank you!

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