For a guy who doesn’t go to the MySQL conference and routinely gets flamed by the MySQL community for being insufficiently adoring of their beloved product, I sure have been putting up a lot of MySQL-related posts recently. Here’s another, zooming through a few different topics.
- MySQL 5.4 was announced this week. The highlights seem to be the lifting of a sharp limit on the number of cores MySQL can use, and better optimization for subqueries. Both of these were areas of sharp technical competition between Oracle and Sybase in the mid-1990s; along with row-level locking and the general bugginess of Sybase Release 10, they are a huge part of the reason Oracle left Sybase in the dust in 1995-6. These advances probably get MySQL to about the state of the art of second-tier enterprise DBMS in 1998, at least in those respects.
- Another note on MySQL 5.4 — the scalability advance was contributed by Mark Callaghan of Google. This is a case of a major advance being contributed to a vendor-owned open source product by the community. I call that out because it’s rare.
- MySQL also announced a marketing and support program to be — well, to be supportive of remote DBA firms. The first winner is Pythian Group, who may be best known for a blog — in which I’ve been flamed for being insufficiently adoring of MySQL.
- Matt Mullenweg, creator of WordPress (which is probably the application that has caused the most MySQL usage, including by me), wrote: ” … we’re not beholden to any one company, only to what works best for us. Today that’s MySQL, tomorrow that’s MySQL, a year from now we’ll see.” I think that’s a great summary.
- It occurs to me that we’re apt to see a lot of FUD on all sides. Those selling against MySQL can point to all sorts of ways Oracle could screw it up. (That’s one of the biggest reasons I think viable escape-from-Oracle MySQL forks are needed.) Conversely, Oracle/MySQL can try to have it both ways, encouraging the MySQL ecosystem while still sowing fear about any Oracle/MySQL competitors such as forks, specialized storage engines, and the like.