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Making MySQL Better for Operations

In the MySQL team, one of our focuses over the last few releases has been improving the usability of the MySQL Server for operations teams.  The results can be seen in a number of areas:

  • Our continued investment in Performance Schema.  

Discussing online schema migrations with Oracle's MySQL engineering managers

Last week I had the pleasant opportunity of introducing and discussing the operation of online schema migrations to MySQL's engineering managers, as part of their annual meeting, in London.

Together with Simon J. Mudd of Booking.com, we discussed our perception of what it takes to run online schema migrations on a live, busy system.

While the Oracle/MySQL engineers develop new features or optimize behavior in the MySQL, we of the industry have the operational expertise and understanding of the flow of working with MySQL. In all topics, and in schema migration in particular, there is a gap between what's perceived to be the use case and what the use case actually is. It is the community's task to provide feedback back to Oracle so as to align development to match operations need where possible.

Our meeting included the following:

Need for schema migrations

We presented, based on our …

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OTN appreciation day : MySQL 8.0 data dictionary

About one month ago, the MySQL team at Oracle released MySQL 8.0, with a large list of changes. One of the most interesting features in the new release is also one that does not show up much, also because the team has gone to great length to keep most of its implementation hidden: the data dictionary.

What makes the data dictionary so interesting, despite its scarce visibility, is the effect that it has on performance. Up to MySQL 5.7, searching the information_schema was an onerous operation, potentially crippling the system. In MySQL 8.0, the same operations are …

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PerconaLive Amsterdam 2016 - Talks and shows

With Oracle Open World behind us, we are now getting ready for the next big event, i.e. the European edition of PerconaLive. I am going to be a presenter three times:

  • MySQL operations in Docker is a three-hour tutorial, and it will be an expansion of the talk by the same title presented at OOW. Attendees who want to play along can do it, by coming prepared with Docker 1.11 or later and the following images already pulled (images with [+] are mandatory, while [-] are optional):

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Showing the hidden tables in MySQL 8 data dictionary

The freshly released MySQL 8.0 includes a data dictionary, which makes MySQL much more reliable. Thanks to this features, we don't have any '.frm' files, and querying the information_schema is 30x to 100x faster than previous versions.

One drawback of the implementation is that the data dictionary tables are hidden by design.

While the reason is fully understandable (they don't want to commit on an interface that may change in the future) many curious users are disappointed, because openness is the basis of good understanding and feedback.

The problem to access the dictionary tables can be split in three parts:

  • Finding the list of tables; …
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MySQL at Oracle Open World 2016

MySQL is a growing presence at Oracle Open World. While most of the headlines belong to the main products, where Oracle services are aiming at world domination, MySQL shared the spotlight, as it was announced to be part of Oracle database cloud. It seems a logical move for Oracle: after all the effort to make MySQL 5.7 the biggest release ever, it stands to reason that it is offered as a competitive feature in its own database as a service.

With this offer, Oracle is applying enterprise pricing and methodologies to a target of emerging companies. MySQL in the Oracle cloud differs from the competition by a few key points:

  • It's only MySQL 5.7. While this is the most advanced MySQL server …
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MySQL team: make it easy to give you feedback!

There was a bold announcement during the MySQL Keynote at Oracle Open World. A new product that will mix up with the existing GA server, called MySQL InnoDB Cluster. This is an evolution of MySQL group replication, which has been in the labs for long time, and the MySQL shell, which was introduced as a side feature last April. The boldness I mentioned before is on account of wanting to add to a GA server something that was defined as release candidate despite never having been out of the labs. The product is interesting as it promises to be a quick and painless cluster deployment, with built-in high availability and scalability.

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Improving the design of MySQL replication

Now that MySQL 8.0 has been revealed, it's time to take a deep look at replication features in the latest releases, and review its overall design.

Server UUID vs Server-ID

At the beginning of replication, there was the server_id variable that identified uniquely a node in a replication system. The variable is still here, but in MySQL 5.6 it was joined by another value, which is created during the server initialisation, regardless of its involvement in a replication system. The server_uuid is a string of hexadecimal characters that is the basis for global transaction identifiers:

select @@server_id, @@server_uuid;
+-------------+--------------------------------------+
| @@server_id | @@server_uuid |
+-------------+--------------------------------------+ …
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MySQL 8.0 first impressions

MySQL 8.0.0 was released today. It has been some time in the making, shrouded in a veil of secrecy for over one year. We knew, from listening to the gossip and looking at the few available previews, some of what was going to bring. So, for the observant users, its main features may not come as a surprise. For the rest of you, here's a quick roundup:

Notable features

  • No MyISAM tables anymore! The grant tables are now InnoDB, meaning that grant operations are now atomic.
  • A real data dictionary. This change is less visible than the previous one. The data dictionary tables are hidden and only a subset of the data is available through information_schema views. The reason for the hidden tables is to allow a stable interface through several versions. I am …
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Lightning talks at Percona Live Amsterdam: come on stage!

The schedule to Percona Live Europe 2016 is being finalized. It should be published soon, and it will include 3 hour and 6 hour tutorials, regular 50-minute talks, and shorter 25-minutes talks. It will not include, however, the lightning talks, a session comprising several 5-minute talks, and they are missing from the initial schedule for two reasons:

  • We want to offer a chance to all attendees to propose a lightning talk for some time. We would like to have more quality material to choose from.
  • They will not be in the conference venue. Instead, they will be hosted at Booking, during the community dinner.

Unlike in previous editions, though, the lightning talks will …

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