I load up https://myhost/phpmyadmin/scripts/setup.php in my browser and none of the buttons do anything except create the config.inc.php file. After the file is created nothing else has any apparent effect, and doesn't change the mod time on config.inc.php. If I remove config.inc.php, pushing a button re-creates it.
https://myhost/phpmyadmin comes up as expected, but of course complains that it can't access the database and offers a link to the setup script.
All files are owner:group as apache:apache . chmod 777 doesn't help.
OS: 2.6.18-53.1.6.el5.028stab053.6 #1 SMP Mon Feb 11 20:14:31 MSK 2008 i686 Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU L5320 @ 1.86GHz GenuineIntel GNU/Linux
php 5.2.6 (phpinfo() works fine, other php apps work fine)
mysql Ver 14.12 Distrib 5.0.60 (but this is not relevant, yet)