gnome-doc-utils is missing db2omf - SOLVED

Michael Crawford mdcrawford at
Thu Feb 5 14:04:17 PST 2009

> On Thu, Feb 5, 2009 at 12:59 PM, Michael Crawford <mdcrawford at> wrote:
>> I can't build gnucash because gnome-doc-utils won't build.  It won't
>> build because db2omf isn't installed, and I can't figure out which
>> port it should be in.

It turns out I was looking at the wrong error message.  Here is the right one:

Making all in doc
Making all in gnome-doc-make
Unknown option: n
Usage: head [-options] <url>...

That is, the command "head -n" is being given in the build, but the
head command says it doesn't accept  a -n argument.

This was confusing, because "man head" said that it does - and I've
used the head command for decades.  It prints out the beginning of a
file, with the number of lines to display being given by the -n

Well I finally got around to examining /usr/bin/head, and discovering
that it was a Perl script, and not a binary as I expected.  And it
turns out to be some kind of HTTP utility.

There was no head in MacPorts yet, so after again looking it up in the
Debian package contents search, I installed the coreutils port.  But
that installed ghead, not head.

Googling for:

   "mac os x" /usr/bin/head

Turned up the culprit, as explained in Brad Rice's blog:

   /usr/bin/head and perl lwp

His blog links to this post by Ken Williams:

A Perl CPAN package called LWP tries to install a command called
/usr/bin/HEAD - uppercase "HEAD", but because HFS+ is by default
case-insensitive, it ends up overwriting the lowercase /usr/bin/head.

HFS+ preserves filename cases, but you can't have to files with the
same spelling in the same directory, even if their cases are

LWP is some kind of automated HTTP client; I installed it a while back
to enable the generation of RSS feeds for my blog, which is just a
bunch of static HTML files, rather than being implemented by some kind
of web application software.  I have a Perl script that downloads my
homepage and looks for new blog entries in it, then generates my RSS.
I upload the RSS file to my site with scp.

Both Brad Rice and Ken Williams recommend getting the /usr/bin/head
from your OS X install DVD, but what I did was after installing the
coreutils port, I copied /opt/local/bin/ghead to /usr/bin/head.  It
seems to work fine now.

And I got gnome-doc-utils to install!

Back to building gnucash.

Ever Faithful,

Michael David Crawford
mdcrawford at gmail dot com

   I'm looking for a job in Silicon Valley:

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