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Displaying posts with tag: rant (reset)
Peak benchmarketing season for MySQL

Maybe this is my XKCD week. With Oracle Open World and Percona Live Amsterdam we are approaching peak benchmarketing season for MySQL. I still remember when MySQL 4.0 was limited to about 10k QPS on 4 and 8 core servers back around 2005, so the 1M QPS results we see today are a reminder of the great progress that has been made thanks to investments by upstream and the community.

In General
But getting 1.5M QPS today compared to 1M QPS last year isn't at the top of the list for many (potential) users of MySQL. I use performance, usability, mangeability, availability and efficiency to explain what matters for web-scale DBMS users. My joke is that each of these makes a different group happy: performance -> marketing, usability -> developers, manageability -> operations, availability -> end users, …

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The annoyance of the day, brought to you live from the MySQL Ecosystem

And by MySQL Ecosystem here, I do not only include Oracle but also MariaDB.

So I am annoyed, not overly annoyed (probably also a little disappointed), but enough to do something about it (write this post).  In the last days, two blog posts - relayed in social medias - were published by MySQL vendors (I am not linking to the posts, it is a waste of time for the reader - see below - and they can

on time in mysql processlist

There was one MySQL feature that I was always very afraid to ask for. I sure needed it for past 15 years of my MySQL practice, and yet I never got to it. I wanted MySQL processlist (‘SHOW PROCESSLIST’, later – information_schema.processlist) to have more accurate query execution time.

I submitted a patch for that to MongoDB (and it got merged and released really quickly). I couldn’t admit to myself and others that MySQL does not have this functionality, even though it is hard to reason about systems in production without such data.

When 99.999% of queries happen within 1s, one has to resort to statistical analysis of zeroes and ones to determine how long they may be running (that is, if nine queries are at 0s and one is at 1s, there’s a chance that all of them are running for 0.1s). Unfortunately, this kind of statistical analysis is not feasible …

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Benchmark(et)ing

Benchmarking and benchmarketing both have a purpose. Both also have a bad reputation. A frequently expressed opinion is that benchmark results are useless. I usually disagree. I don't mind benchmarketing and think it is a required part of product development but I am not fond of benchmarketing disguised as benchmarking.

Benchmarketing is a common activity for many DBMS products whether they are closed or open source. Most products need new users to maintain viability and marketing is part of the process. The goal for benchmarketing is to show that A is better than B. Either by accident or on purpose good benchmarketing results focus on the message A is better than B rather than A is better than B in this context. Note that the context can be critical and includes the hardware, workload, whether both systems were properly configured and some attempt to explain why one system was faster.

I …

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Everything is awesome

My kids watched the new Lego movie today and spent the rest of the day repeating "Everything is amazing". I spent a few hours reading MongoDB documentation to help a friend who uses it. Everything wasn't awesome for all of us. I try to be a pessimist when reading database documentation. If you spend any time near production then you spend a lot of time debugging things that fail. Being less than optimistic is a good way to predict failure.

One source of pessimism is database limits. MongoDB has a great page to describe limits. It limits index keys to less than 1025 bytes. But this is a great example that shows the value of pessimism. The documentation states that values (MongoDB documents) are not added to the index when the index key is too large. An optimist might assume that an insert or update statement fails when the index key is too large, but that …

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Legacy isn't a dirty word

Pardon the rant but the winter storm has kept me in a hotel away from home for a few days. I exchanged email this week with someone pitching a solution to a problem I don't have (MySQL failover). But by "I" I really mean the awesome operations team with whom I share an office. The pitch got off to a bad start. It is probably better to compliment the supposed expertise of the person to whom you are pitching than to suggest they are no different than COBOL hackers working on Y2K problems.

Unfortunately legacy is a bad word in my world. Going off topic, so is web scale. I hope we can change this. The suggestion that MySQL was a legacy technology was conveyed to me via email, x86, Linux and a laptop. Most of those have been around long enough to be considered legacy technology. DNA and the wheel are also legacy technology. Age isn't the issue. Relevance is determined by utility and efficiency.

Remember that …

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The Foundation Exists!

I have been wondering what the Foundation has been up to. I had high hopes for it and even contributed money but it has been very quiet. Fortunately I learned that it has been busy making decisions, maybe not in public, but somewhere. And at Percona London we will be told why it forked MariaDB prior to 5.6 and reimplemented a lot of features.

In other news the Percona London lineup looks great and I appreciate that Oracle is part of it.

on nuodb and falcon

Warning: this is a mixture of historical content, biases, stupid marketing and unknown/proprietary/closed source technologies. Proceed with caution.

NuoDB marketing was sending out this message, encouraging me to blog (they were looking for bloggers too):

And while Facebook sharded MySQL 4000 times, even they call it a “fate worse than death.”

We’ve seen this phrase before and it did not come from us. For whatever reason NewSQL echo chamber is repeating this with less and less truth in it. In various whitepapers (all behind registration walls) they mention some analyst estimates and try to put a parallel between operating costs of large companies and something a new developer would do, as if everyone is living under same constraints.

I don’t know if NuoDB is a good technology for the customer they’re targeting, all their diagrams essentially …

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Good news, MySQL 5.6.11 is here

MySQL 5.6.11 is here with many useful bug fixes. Not so good news - you won't be able to read about those bugs beyond the brief text in the release notes as many of the bug reports are behind the support paywall. If you have lots of time to spare maybe you can read diffs in the source tree on launchpad.

This is a lousy way to grow a community, especially the community contributing many of the useful bug reports, reproduction cases and some patches. I just reviewed the 5.6.11 release notes and I am impressed that lots of problems were fixed. Many of the bugs were reported by my team and for those bugs there are public reports.

Pro tip - file a public bug report, then link a support request to it to keep bugs open. …

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My presentation from Fosdem

Last weekend I attended my first Fosdem conference. It was great to finally visit the conference that might be the biggest open source conference in the world. It's also an amazing experience how our Belgian friends pull off such a magnificent event purely with volunteer effort. You might say the conference itself is very much open source: free entry, created by volunteers. Organizers estimated that this year there were 7000+ attendees on campus. A hard data point was over 2300 simultaneous devices connected to Wifi.

I presented an introduction to Galera Cluster for MySQL. Due to problems with my personal laptop, I had to resort to an old version of the same presentation I had uploaded to Slideshare last year. (This is a variation of the old rule: The best way to backup your code is to publish it online as open source...). These are the slides:

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