OK. I've been spending the last 1 1/2 hours looking for a solution to this. I'm running a development server on my OpenSUSE 11.0 box and installed Apache2, PHP-5.2.9, MySQL and PEAR all using YAST, but no matter what I do I cannot include the installed PEAR packages in my PHP scripts. I figured out that the include_path configuration variable is being set to '.:' despite the loaded php.ini file setting this variable as include_path = ".:/usr/share/php5:/usr/share/php5/PEAR"

It does not matter how I change the include_path variable and it does not matter if I remove the .: part. I've restarted apache2 many times and I still get the error message. It suggests to me that the path is being changed at some point but what could be changing it? Any ideas appreciated because this is a really frustrating problem :#

OH yes, and one of my error messages for good measure:

Fatal error: require_once() [function.require]: Failed opening required 'File/Archive.php' (include_path='.:') in /srv/www/htdocs/pitchfork/actions/pitchfork-action-file-decompress.php on line 16