Sunday, May 07, 2006


Apache on RHEL 3 (undefined symbol: gdbm_errno)

While trying to enable web based admin gui for our sun ray server, I discovered that, httpd on RHEL 3 has some problems with libraries.

[root@manhattan root]# httpd
httpd: relocation error: /usr/lib/ undefined symbol: gdbm_errno

Since I had not installed or changed anything after installing RedHat Enterprise Linux AS 3, I believe, this bug comes packaged with the distribution. And I expect Red Hat to test their software more carefully, at least httpd.

To debug, I checked dependencies for and symbols in To my surprise, gdbm_errno was in the, and httpd should not have reported error. Everything (LD_LIBRARY_PATH and was fine.

[root@manhattan root]# rpm -aq | grep httpd

[root@manhattan root]# rpm -aq | grep gdbm

[root@manhattan root]# ldd -d /usr/lib/ => /lib/tls/ (0x00cc8000) => /lib/tls/ (0x008c2000)
        /lib/ => /lib/ (0x00216000)
undefined symbol: gdbm_errno    (/usr/lib/
undefined symbol: apr_pool_cleanup_null (/usr/lib/

[root@manhattan root]# nm --dynamic /usr/lib/ | grep gdbm_errno
000061c4 D gdbm_errno

After trying out many things and googling, I was able to fix the problem. Before starting httpd, I had to run

[root@manhattan root]# export LD_PRELOAD=/usr/lib/

I am not sure why and how it worked and why exactly was their a problem in the first place. This will probably remain a mystery for me.

Nilesh Bansal,

Thank you very, very, very much for posting this solution. I have been struggling with this for days using subversion and apache.

BTW: I am in Australia and I was in Toronto, Canada Last week (10/06/2006 - 07/07/2006) visiting family and friends. Wish I had seen this earlier. I would have taken you out for lunch and drinks.
Hope to meet you next time I am in Canada.

Here is a link that explains LD_PRELOAD
I have to say Thank You VERY much as well for posting this solution! Finally relief. I was dreading this issue causing my development work to be delayed...

Thanks for posting.

I ran into the same problem on a CentOS 4.4 environment.

The only thing I can think of odd for this system is that I have the default apache running along side of the apache installed with the groundwork opensource monitor.
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