Today I ran into an interesting problem that I thought I'd share here to save the next developer that ends up in the same situation a whole lot of trouble. I have been running PHP5 as a FastCGI module on a Windows IIS server, and I recently installed the Aspell library and enabled the pspell extension in my php.ini file. I also installed the English Aspell dictionary. But when I went to use pspell, I was getting ambiguous errors that would terminate script execution without warning.
So I started to break things down, and came to the conclusion that the following code successfully executed its first line, but broke on the last line with the call to pspell_new_config:
$pspell_config = pspell_config_create('en');
$pspell_link = pspell_new_config($pspell_config);
This returned a FastCGI error in the browser, with error number -2147467259 (0x80004005). By luck, I happened to think to try the same script via the command line, which gave a much more descriptive error. What happened was that the dictionary installer created the *.dat files in the Aspell\data directory using the Windows standard CRLF "\r\n" instead of the UNIX standard "\n" for line feeds. By changing these all back to the UNIX standard, everything worked. It's apparently very touchy about these line feeds, so if you're wracking your brain over why pspell_new_config is breaking your scripts and you're using a Windows server, start by ensuring that there aren't any extraneous "\r" characters in your dictionary files.