Linked by snydeq on Thu 21st May 2009 22:55 UTC
Databases Fatal Exception's Neil McAllister questions the effect recent developments in the MySQL community will have on MySQL's future in the wake of Oracle's acquisition of Sun. Even before Oracle announced its buyout, there were signs of strain within the MySQL community, with key MySQL employees exiting and forks of the MySQL codebase arising, including Widenius' MariaDB.
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not an expert
by TechGeek on Fri 22nd May 2009 02:24 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres. There are some very big groups using MySQL technology when they could have gone the other way. Why? Was it the fact that there was Enterprise level support offered for MySQL? In any event, we need to watch Red Hat and Suse. If they dump MySQL, which I doubt, then there is a chance that one of the other forks will become mainstream. Just like when everyone switched from XFree86 to Xorg.

Reply Score: 4

RE: not an expert
by kaiwai on Fri 22nd May 2009 02:44 in reply to "not an expert"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres. There are some very big groups using MySQL technology when they could have gone the other way. Why? Was it the fact that there was Enterprise level support offered for MySQL? In any event, we need to watch Red Hat and Suse. If they dump MySQL, which I doubt, then there is a chance that one of the other forks will become mainstream. Just like when everyone switched from XFree86 to Xorg.


The one flaw you make is that everything is chosen for rational reasons; a lot of the selection is based on, "no one ever got fired for using [company] product". Take Sybase, it wiped the floor with Oracle on Solaris x86 in a benchmark not too long ago and yet people still fixate around Oracle even with its major performance draw backs.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: not an expert
by haydenm on Fri 22nd May 2009 04:03 in reply to "RE: not an expert"
haydenm Member since:
2006-10-29

I agree, similar situation with Apache httpd IMO.

MySQL has the mind-share and customer base weighing in its favour. When a new project is started MySQL is chosen usually because it is the first thing that comes to mind and there's a lot of success stories surrounding it(especially the "next big thing" "garage to riches" "web 2.0" start-ups all blogging about what they achieved with it).

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: not an expert
by braddock on Fri 22nd May 2009 03:01 in reply to "not an expert"
braddock Member since:
2005-07-08

I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres.


Around 1998 I moved my development from Postgres to MySQL because I found it did what I needed, was simpler, and less complicated.

Around 2007 I moved my development from MySQL to Sqlite because I found it did what I needed, was simpler, and less complicated.

(Postgres wasn't designed for SQL and had all kinds of bizzare notions - my understanding is it has been redesigned since losing the war)

Remember sleepycat - bought for dinner...

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: not an expert
by werpu on Fri 22nd May 2009 16:52 in reply to "RE: not an expert"
werpu Member since:
2006-01-18


(Postgres wasn't designed for SQL and had all kinds of bizzare notions - my understanding is it has been redesigned since losing the war)

Remember sleepycat - bought for dinner...


Well Postgres is a redevelopment of ingres the grandfather of all relational databases we know today.
It was started by the ingres father!
I would not say it was not designed for SQL since it was the first db providing an ANSI SQL 97 compliant implementation but I assume parts of its codebase are way older than SQL, if those still exist.
But Postgres has more things going on, it up until now still is the only oss database which can do table inheritance, it recently got recursive joins, I have yet to have a deep inside look at the db, but there is a load of enterprise features hidden under the roof which are worthwhile checking out!

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: not an expert
by Teknoenie on Fri 22nd May 2009 03:27 in reply to "not an expert"
Teknoenie Member since:
2007-06-07

@TechGeek

"I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres. There are some very big groups using MySQL technology when they could have gone the other way. Why?"

There isn't a specific reason that I can see. At least not a logical one. Instead it seems that people who are choosing MySQL are doing so because they don't use much if any of the traditional RDMS features, choosing to instead use application level APIs to provide similar RDMS style functionality. This is good for the application developer in the sense that they are not tied to a specific database vendor per-se.

Take Facebook for example. Lead engineers have stated specifically that they don't care that the data be consistent at all times. They understand that they work in terms of time zones, geographic locations, etc, so if a user doesn't see all the updated information right away who cares.

This thinking isn't bad, but much of the functionality that Oracle, Sybase, PostgreSQL or MySQL just doesn't matter when you develop like this.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: not an expert
by Soulbender on Fri 22nd May 2009 07:21 in reply to "not an expert"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres.


I guess it's just like how there must be a reason why people chose Windows Server over Linux.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: not an expert
by dagw on Fri 22nd May 2009 12:06 in reply to "not an expert"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres.

Years ago there used to be a significant performance gap(in MySQLs favor) between MySQL and Postgres when under the sort of loads often found with web sites. The admin tools for MySQL used to be better and easier to handle. Also a great many third party applications and libraries used to be MySQL only and require a great deal of hacking to get working with postgres.

Non of these limitations hold true and more, but the result of all of this is that there are a lot more people and projects that use MySQL for historical reasons and see no compelling reason to change. Even when starting a new project many people will go with what they know.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: not an expert
by werpu on Fri 22nd May 2009 16:47 in reply to "RE: not an expert"
werpu Member since:
2006-01-18

"I am not an expert but there must be reasons why people chose MySQL over Postgres.

Years ago there used to be a significant performance gap(in MySQLs favor) between MySQL and Postgres when under the sort of loads often found with web sites. The admin tools for MySQL used to be better and easier to handle. Also a great many third party applications and libraries used to be MySQL only and require a great deal of hacking to get working with postgres.
"
The problem I saw was that the performance was only there due to the reason the MySQL guys left out transactions for a reason. They could not pull of their own transactional storage.
Exactly this made me suspicious about MySQL in general before even having used it. Then shouting out left and right that no one needs transactions anyway, because they could not pull it off did not help me in my confidence using it!

The funny thing is, as soon as they added a transactional storage backend the speed went down big ways especially if you used it in classical relational situations with joins over several tables and parallel access!

On the other hand Postgres devlivered transactions out of the box, and improved their performance and nowadays is in the same league as MySQL in its isam implementations while handling parallel loads way better, while MySQL itself still has not transactional storage mechanism of its own (well not it has now that everything is under the Oracle umbrella)




Non of these limitations hold true and more, but the result of all of this is that there are a lot more people and projects that use MySQL for historical reasons and see no compelling reason to change. Even when starting a new project many people will go with what they know.


I´d say the biggest problem why everyone adapted MySQL was, the media hype and the close tie in the LAMP stack between PHP and MySQL. But I see a load of shift recently. The kids from back then have grown up and now know better about databases. The raving from a few years back is gone and a load of MySQL users already also use alternatives and mygrate. I think the reason why MySQL still is as strong as it is is mostly legacy applications which are too costly to be migrated to another DBMS, and for simply webapps MySQL often is fine enough (if you dont run into buggy UTF-8 implementations like I did in version 4)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: not an expert - default
by jabbotts on Fri 22nd May 2009 15:08 in reply to "not an expert"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

When I had to setup my first app with database back end it came down to Postgresql and mysql. LAMP said mysql as did the distribution defaults. Numerous other since have defaulted to mysql so I stick with it. The user account, host, database security combination is also nicely done though I don't know postgresql's to compare.

Actually, it's only with Deb Lenny and eGroupware that I've seen postgresql as the default dependency.

At work, it's a lagacy issue due to inheriting a number of webapps already built on mysql.

I'm happy to change the database if the developers are happy to port the webapps but my position is to support the metal up to the web layer to enable the developer's work rather than complicate it.

Reply Parent Score: 2