MySQL table alterations can interrupt production traffic causing bad customer experience or in worst cases, loss of revenue. Not all DBAs, developers, syadmins know MySQL well enough to avoid this pitfall. DBAs usually encounter these kinds of production interruptions when working with upgrade scripts that touch both application and database or if an inexperienced admin/dev engineer perform the schema change without knowing how MySQL operates internally.
* Direct MySQL ALTER table locks for duration of change (pre-5.6)
* Online DDL in MySQL 5.6 is not always online and may incurr locks
* Even with …