If you are installing the TYPO3 content management system (CMS), after uploading the files to your web server and setting some directory permissions, you are supposed to point your browser to your web server’s root where you just have installed TYPO3 in order to continue the installation. A screen similar to this is displayed:
Enter database username, password and server (normally “localhost”) and click continue. If the following screen (as step 2) is displayed, you are in trouble:
This screen is supposed to show you the availible databases for selection. But as you can see it ends just below the word “Database”. No error message is displayed.
The reason for this is that PHP is running in Safe mode. By configuring your webserver/PHP to run with Safe mode off the installation will work.
This situation is actually described in the TYPO3 Wiki under troubleshooting saying “This could cause the Install Tool to display an error message”. In my case it didn’t and it took some time of head scratching to figure it out.