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When you include large files (mine was about 170k) the whole script will fail to execute. Simply reducing the size to below 170k by deleting some text from an heredoc without changing any other code will get the script to work. A much simpler (just one heredoc that is echoed) but larger file failed when it got bigger than 240k.
Running both scripts under PHP Version 4.2.3 worked without errors.
There was a question about the maximal size of arrays [webmasterworld.com] a while ago where the script failed once the array got really big. I wouldn´t be surprised if the same script would be running fine in a newer PHP version.
Comments welcome. Have you experienced similar bugs in PHP.