When the next version of Ubuntu is released on October 29th, PHP developers won’t be able to upgrade to PHP 5.3 through the included package management tools.
A meeting of the development team on July 30th nixed the inclusion of PHP 5.3 from inclusion in Karmic, the next iteration of Ubuntu for the desktop and the server. According to meeting minutes, there is concern amongst the Ubuntu security team that failure to include the suhosin patch in the PHP release would be a feature regression. Instead, the release will be referred to PPA until more testing can be completed.
With the release of PHP 5.3 to the world, I wanted to be one of the first to try it. The problem is that the typical package managers for Ubuntu won’t include PHP 5.3 for some time – perhaps as long as a year. This is a problem, since I really want to try PHP’s latest and greatest features for myself.
The problem is, there seems to be a lack of clear, coherent instructions online about compiling PHP on Ubuntu from source. Either it’s so insanely simple that anyone who does it figures everyone else knows how, or everyone relies on the pre-built binaries released by the world that any time I search for “Ubuntu PHP source” I get “why don’t you just use the built-in package manager?” And so, I wanted to write a set of instructions for how I configured and compiled PHP, on Ubuntu Jaunty.
For the most part we’ll use standard out-of-the-box packages that Ubuntu provides. Since the features I’m looking for are in PHP 5.3, I’m fine with having slightly outdated packages for other software as long as they’re compatible with PHP 5.3.