I'm attempting to install automake-1.13.4 on my system.

First, I do ./configure which creates a Makefile compatible with my system.

However, when I execute make, it runs for a bit, but then returns the following error message:

/bin/sh: -c: line 5: syntax error near unexpected token ||
/bin/sh: -c: line 5: `    {  || exec 5>&2 >$tmp 2>&1; } \'
make: *** [doc/amhello-1.0.tar.gz] Error 1

I can't seem to figure out why this is occuring.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • What is your system? does it have an existing version of automake - or are you trying a bootstrap install? Jan 21, 2018 at 0:29
  • The system I'm using runs Red Hat Linux. And yes, I currently have automake 1.11.1 installed.
    – njszym
    Jan 21, 2018 at 14:12

2 Answers 2


I've figured it out. This error is related to the amhello-1.0.tar.gz file.

The originally provided file was not configured properly for my system. Therefore, if I rebuild the file myself, and replace the original amhello-1.0.tar.gz, then I can run make with no errors.

To see how to rebuild amhello-1.0.tar.gz so that its configured properly to your system, see the link below:


By the way, it is also important to run autoreconf -vfi before compiling the package.

{  ||

A command is missing between { and ||. But that may not be the only problem.

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