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MySQL Upgrades Flagship Database, Services

Release of MySQL 6.0 is expected in mid-2008.

In its first major refresh in nearly two years, MySQL AB is set to release a new version of its flagship open source database, along with a bevy of new tools and beefed up subscription-based services.

The company launched a swath of new software and services at last month's Japanese MySQL Users Conference in Tokyo. MySQL is considered the fastest growing open source database software platform and is emerging as a key platform for Windows developers.

While the majority of MySQL databases run on Linux servers, a significant portion of the applications are developed on Windows, says Zack Urlocker, executive vice president of products at Cupertino, Calif.-based MySQL.

"Windows is our No. 2 development environment," Urlocker says. "We see a lot of people who will use MySQL on Windows for development, sometimes with Visual Studio with .NET, with Visual Basic and C#."

MySQL is emerging as the key database for public and corporate Web 2.0 applications, says RedMonk analyst Stephen O'Grady: "MySQL has done a good job in the Web tier, particularly with folks designing Web applications."

MySQL Moving Up
Central to the launch is MySQL 5.1, which will allow for partitioning of large database volumes, row-based replication and the ability to host MySQL clusters on disk, rather than just within the database memory.

All of these features are aimed at improving performance and simplifying management of large applications, according to Urlocker. The new release should show a 20 percent performance boost over its predecessor, MySQL 5.0, he says.

Also new is the significantly updated MySQL Enterprise service, a fee-based support offering that includes regular updates, patches and fixes for deployments. Also included in the service is MySQL Enterprise Monitor, which continuously monitors database servers to give administrators and developers awareness of 600 various conditions.

Included with Enterprise Monitor is the new Replication Monitor. It offers more than 100 "advisor" rules and a suite of more than 20 graphs to give administrators and developers views of their distributed database environments.

"We see a lot of people who will use MySQL on Windows for development, sometimes with Visual Studio with .NET, with Visual Basic and C#."
Zach Urlocker, Executive Vice President of Products, MySQL AB
Zack Urlocker

The company is also developing MySQL Proxy-middleware that will let developers examine queries and redirect and rewrite them. "People are using that to do some interesting analysis," Urlocker says, adding that the company will be building other new capabilities over time, such as support for load balancing. "We are getting a lot of uptake for that in the open source community," he says.

For those looking to provide client access to MySQL databases, the company is also releasing its MySQL Connector/ODBC 5.1, based on the widely supported ODBC standard API.

Finally, the company has released an alpha version of its Falcon Database Engine as a preview version of the next major release, MySQL 6.0. The company is designing Falcon for large-memory, multithreaded and multicore applications, notably large Web sites. MySQL 6.0 is slated for the middle of next year, Urlocker says.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.

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