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here's a very simple script:

[root@poker cgi-bin]# cat globtest.pl
#!/usr/bin/perl -w

my $foo="/tmp/*";
my @glob=glob($foo);
my $size=scalar(@glob);

print "Content-type: text/html\n\n";
print "<html><head>\n";
print "SIZE: $size\n";

when I run it from a URL on a RHEL5.3 system, it tells me how many files are in /tmp, but when I run it on a RHEL 6.2 box it reports 0.

what gives?

actually it's more complicated than I thought and forgot to mention. This is running in a VirtualBox VM. I have another machine running vmware and it works fine in a RHEL62 VM there.


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What version of Perl is running in each environment? And are you sure that there are files in /tmp on the RHEL 6.2 system? –  larsks Feb 14 '12 at 21:24
there are definitely files in /tmp. I've also extended my testing to try this on a fedora 16 system and am getting the same results. I even expanded the test to make it more interesting by looking at both /usr/* and a new directory /tmp2/*. It reports the correct number of files in all 3 when run from a shell, but reports 0 for both /tmp and /tmp2 when run from a webserver. I am running perl 5.14 on fedora. –  Mark J Seger Feb 15 '12 at 16:06
What happens if you run the script on the command line as the apache user? Something like: sudo -u apache /path/to/your/script –  larsks Feb 15 '12 at 16:38
good suggestion, but I did think of that and it worked correctly. sorry I forgot to mention it. keep those suggestions coming though... –  Mark J Seger Feb 15 '12 at 16:53

1 Answer 1

This is most likely related to SELinux. Or at least I found it to be the case, when I wrote a similar script.

The solutions for me to either disable SELinux , or change the SELinux ownership context, as documented by the following answer

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