I have not caused a fist fight in a while, so it's time to take off the gloves. I claim that somewhere around of 99% of advice about tuning MySQL's key cache hit ratio is wrong, even when you hear it from experts. There are two major problems with the key buffer hit ratio, and a host of smaller ones. If you make some assumptions that are very hard to prove, there actually is a very limited use for the statistics from which the ratio is derived (but not the ratio itself, which you should ignore). Read on for the details.
In this article, I will use key buffer, key_buffer, and key cache interchangeably. However, I will be careful about the difference between "rate" and "ratio". In this article, the key cache miss rate is defined as the number of misses per unit of time, with the units of operations per second. The key cache miss ratio is the ratio between reads from the disk and reads from the cache; it is a dimensionless …[Read more]