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FreeBSD /bin/sh with SHELL=.../zsh breaking autoconf ./configure?

From: Mike Meyer
Subject: FreeBSD /bin/sh with SHELL=.../zsh breaking autoconf ./configure?
Date: Sat, 8 Mar 2008 20:56:50 -0500


I have a *very* obscure autoconf problem. It first surfaced trying to
build the alpha releases of Python 3.0. However it also shows up with
the Python 2.5.2 sources, and some other tarballs I happened to have
handy that depend on autoconf.

The system in question is FreeBSD 6.2-STABLE, although I see the same
failures on 7.0-RELEASE. Trying to configure Python 3.0a3 starts with
the following messages:

as_func_failure succeeded.
as_func_failure succeeded.
No shell found that supports shell functions.
Please tell address@hidden about your system,
including any error possibly output before this

(which is why I'm sending you mail).

The configure script otherwise seems to run fine, creates the
Makefile, and exits without any other errors. Likewise, there are no
errors in config.log, nor any mention of as_func or shell
functions. However, the Makefile is pretty horribly broken. Trying to
do a build starts out normally enough, but dies halfway through
complaining about dependency loops (native make) or recursive
dependencies (gnu make).

The last thing I think you need to know to recreate this problem is
that 1) there is only one other shell installed on the system, zsh,
and 2) SHELL points to zsh.

If you change either of this - by, for instance, installing bash, or
setting SHELL to /bin/sh or nothing - you don't get those complaints
from ./configure, the Makefile is fine, and everything works as

One thing that makes this even harder to find is that building through
the FreeBSD ports system hides it. SHELL is probably reset as part of
the process.

Mike Meyer <address@hidden>   
Independent Network/Unix/Perforce consultant, email for more information.

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