problems getting cabal-install to work on CentOS

Chris Dornan chris at
Mon Feb 14 16:13:53 CET 2011

I have just checked – CentOS doesn’t seem to mount /tmp noexec out of the box -- at least not on the servers I have built (where I have used the default simple partition arrangement with /tmp in the root partition).


But two servers I have leased have been setup in this way, the original problem showing up on one of these servers.


As for a quick and reliable method for testing noexec – how about the autoconfig way (i.e., design an experiment)?


As for what to do when the system /tmp won’t do – a canned simple error message with workarounds would solve 90% of the problems; I either that or, for each build do “mkdir -p $HOME/.cabal-tmp”, issuing a warning to this effect. 




From: Duncan Coutts [mailto:duncan.coutts at] 
Sent: 14 February 2011 14:29
To: Chris Dornan
Cc: cabal-devel
Subject: RE: problems getting cabal-install to work on CentOS


On Mon, 2011-02-14 at 12:14 +0000, Chris Dornan wrote:
> Hi Duncan,

> I am pretty sure it was a tmp directory issue where the default tmp
> directory prohibited execution.

Ah hah. This did subsequently get reported by someone else

> Its main about documentation (I couldn’t find an explanation of how to
> control where Cabal puts its temporary files) and diagnostics –
> something to the effect that ‘I failed to execute this file’ – I was
> finding it very difficult to see what was happening.

I bet.

Is /tmp noexec by default on current redhat/centos releases? If so we'll
want to up the priority of these tickets.

If /tmp is noexec, do you know what is the recommend solution on these
platforms. For compiling packages we need to be able to compile and
execute programs. Is there some other location other than /tmp that we
should use?

I wonder if there's a quick and reliable method for testing for noexec,
rather than waiting until we get to the stage where we've unpacked the
package, compiled Setup and are trying to run it.



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