Incompatible libclntsh.so when compiling DBD::Oracle

I tend to write my utilities with Perl, not because I want to make them obscure to my colleagues that don’t know the language, but because Perl is often the right tool for the job. However, when I need to connect my utilities to Oracle, problems arise.
It is not that Perl is not good at connecting to Oracle, but that the Oracle Instant Client is not as easy to install as it sounds, at least in my opinion. And of course, DBD::Oracle depends on the Oracle Instant Client, so in order to get the latter working you need to get the former working too.
On a server running a 64 bit Linux, I found sysadmins have installed 32 bit Oracle Instant Client:
$ file /oracle/instantclient/libclntsh.so.11.1
/oracle/instantclient/libclntsh.so.11.1: 
   ELF 32-bit LSB shared object, Intel 80386, version 1 (SYSV), 
   dynamically linked, stripped

$ uname -p
x86_64
When I tried to compile DBD::Oracle I got an error message saying that ld skipping incompatible libclntsh.so, and that is because Perl was compiled as a 64 bit version, DBD::Oracle as a 64 library and in the middle the Instant Client was a 32 bit version.
In order of disperation you can now:
  • ask your sysadmin to install the 64 bit version of the Oracle Instant Client, and this is the most correct approach;
  • install your own version of Oracle Instant Client;
  • try to compile Perl and DBD::Oracle as a 32 bit version.
    For the sake of my utility, I decided to install a 64 bit of the instant client within my home directory, that is fine since (i) I was using perlbrew to run a more modern version of Perl and (ii) my utility was supposed to die once the work was done.

    And so it is how I did the trick: placed my own private copy of the Oracle Instant Client in my home folder, set the ORACLE_HOME shell variable to point to such directory, and then installed the module via cpanm. This gives me all the time to ask the sysadmins to install the 64 bit version without any rush!

The article Incompatible libclntsh.so when compiling DBD::Oracle has been posted by Luca Ferrari on May 30, 2019

Tags: perl5