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"/lib/cpp" fails sanity check?

From: Brendan Jones <brendan.jones(at)>
Date: Sun Feb 12 2006 - 12:33:27 GMT

I'm a returnee to this list, having last subscribed in 1998!  I am 
migrating a commercial website to a new webhosting provider, and while 
I'm doing that, I thought I should upgrade the version of swish that 
the site uses.  But I've struck problems.

The webhosting server runs Linux with Kernel version 2.6.9-5.0.3.ELsmp, 
Apache 1.3.34 and Perl 5.8.7.  Because I do not own the host, I cannot 
install as root, so I've created 'build' and 'local' directories in 
$HOME.  Also I've checked that all the perl modules recommended have 
been installed on the remote host.  So far so good.

This is what happens:

# ../swish-e-2.4.3/configure --prefix=$HOME/local
checking for a BSD-compatible install... /usr/bin/install -c
checking whether build environment is sane... yes
checking for gawk... gawk
checking whether make sets $(MAKE)... yes
checking build system type... i686-pc-linux-gnulibc1
checking host system type... i686-pc-linux-gnulibc1
checking for style of include used by make... GNU
checking for gcc... gcc
checking for C compiler default output file name... a.out
checking whether the C compiler works... yes
checking whether we are cross compiling... no
checking for suffix of executables...
checking for suffix of object files... o
checking whether we are using the GNU C compiler... yes
checking whether gcc accepts -g... yes
checking for gcc option to accept ANSI C... none needed
checking dependency style of gcc... gcc3
checking for a sed that does not truncate output... /bin/sed
checking for egrep... grep -E
checking for ld used by gcc... /usr/bin/ld
checking if the linker (/usr/bin/ld) is GNU ld... yes
checking for /usr/bin/ld option to reload object files... -r
checking for BSD-compatible nm... /usr/bin/nm -B
checking whether ln -s works... yes
checking how to recognise dependent libraries... pass_all
checking how to run the C preprocessor... /lib/cpp
configure: error: C preprocessor "/lib/cpp" fails sanity check
See `config.log' for more details.

You can look at config.log in full at  Go to line 
729 of the log where it says "configure:4028: error: C preprocessor 
"/lib/cpp" fails sanity check".

While I am reasonably unix-literate, I am not a sysadmin, so config.log 
is not very illuminating to me.  I really need some tips to work out 
whether the problem is me, or the webhosting server, and if the latter, 
how do I persuade them to change their linux build? (laughs)

PS.  I have already checked the archive of this list, and a similar 
problem was reported by a user in 2003.  Some of the things suggested 
to check were:

$ which xml2-config
/usr/bin/xml2-config  (INSTALL says it should list 
"$HOME/local/bin/xml2-config" ??)

$ rpmverify cpp
S.5.....    /usr/bin/cpp
S.5.....    /usr/libexec/gcc/i386-redhat-linux/3.4.3/cc1

$ rpmverify gcc
S.5.....    /usr/bin/gcc
S.5.....    /usr/bin/gcov
S.5.....    /usr/bin/i386-redhat-linux-gcc
S.5.....    /usr/bin/protoize
S.5.....    /usr/bin/unprotoize
S.5.....    /usr/libexec/gcc/i386-redhat-linux/3.4.3/collect2

That looks OK to me, but I don't really know.

Appreciate any guidance!!

Brendan Jones
Received on Sun Feb 12 04:33:31 2006