I had no problems at all installing pbrt.
Setting up the Lights
The biggest problem for me was imagining where the lights should go in the scene. I managed to work out the first 3 configurations in my head, but it got annoying to do that for the 4th configuration so I planned that one out on paper. Additionally, positioning the lights in the camera's coordinate system was difficult for me, so I decided to comment out the camera transform.
I sped up the process by decreasing the number of pixel and area light samples, although I found the shadow noise very annoying to look at. I made sure to get rid of that by using 8 samples in the final image, but that took a while to render on my computer. Next time I think I might just use the myths.
I experimented a little bit by giving all the lights in configuration 4 different colors. It was interesting to see how the different colors interacted with each other, but I didn't produce any particularly amazing images.