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Okay with a little determination I found the answer to my problem and thought I would post it on here since I found plenty of lists and forums that had the question but not the answer so here it goes:
The problem with the "uncompress" symbol is related to libz.so.#
This is a DSO library which is required when building PHP4.
So here is the error message again:
Cannot load /usr/local/apache/libexec/libphp4.so: /usr/local/apache/libexec/libphp4.so: undefined symbol: uncompress
Now here is the solution:
1. First try to clean out whatever files and directories you have created while building php4. Usually they are all under the php#.#.# directory created when you untar the zipped package.
What I did is run the following under the php directory:
>make clean all
>rm -Rf php_4.0.6 (note: version numbers may vary)
2. I manually removed libphp4.so from the apache/libexec directory
3. Obviously I had to re-untar the php package
>tar -zxvf php_4.0.6.tar.gz
4. I ran the configure command
>./configure --with-apxs=/usr/local/apache/bin/apxs --with-mysql=/usr/local/mysql --without-zlib
(Here is what "solves" the problem)
5. Now *BEFORE* running "make" find the top level "Makefile" in the php directory. Using your favourite editor look for the following line:
LTLIBRARY_LDFLAGS = [ other options already there ]
add to it the three characters -lz which are not included by default.
so now it looks like :
LTLIBRARY_LDFLAGS = -lz [ other options already there ]
6. Save and exit.
7. You can now run "make" and then "make install"
To make sure that libz.so.# has been properly linked to libphp4.so run the following command from the apache directory: