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Is MySQL Slowly Turning Closed Source? 336

Posted by timothy
from the seems-like-a-reasonable-suspicion dept.
mpol writes "Sergei from MariaDB speculated on some changes within MySQL 5.5.27. It seems new testcases aren't included with MySQL any more, which leaves developers depending on it in the cold. 'Does this mean that test cases are no longer open source? Oracle did not reply to my question. But indeed, there is evidence that this guess is true. For example, this commit mail shows that new test cases, indeed, go in this "internal" directory, which is not included in the MySQL source distribution.' On a similar note, updates for the version history on Launchpad are not being updated anymore. What is Oracle's plan here? And is alienating the developer community just not seen as a problem at Oracle?"
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Is MySQL Slowly Turning Closed Source?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:31AM (#41033703)

    And is alienating the developer community just not seen as a problem at Oracle?

    Pretty much exactly this.

  • by kimvette (919543) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:35AM (#41033725) Homepage Journal

    Anyone asking this question has obviously never dealt with Oracle.

  • Obviously (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Nethemas the Great (909900) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:51AM (#41033795)
    Oracle has been doing nothing more than gobbling competitors the whole time. Just because the haven't done it overnight doesn't mean that's not what they're doing.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:55AM (#41033821)

    Indeed. This has been obvious for some time (InnoDB) which is why many needing similar functionality have moved on to PostgreSQL. Of course there so many options these days, and as usual the choice depends on the application.

    Oracle: ZFS, MySQL, VirtualBox, Java...

    And quite frankly ZFS and Java do not integrate well with many Linux distributions. Avoid oracle or face a never ending string of hidden costs.

    I know many X-Sun employees, Oracle is not earning a good reputation with the science and engineering folks. Once their brand dries up like Cisco's is, it will be all down hill from there.

  • MariaDB (Score:5, Insightful)

    by euxneks (516538) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:59AM (#41033831)
    MariaDB is a drop in replacement for MySQL which was forked a while ago: http://mariadb.org/ [mariadb.org]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:59AM (#41033833)

    Exactly. Anybody asking this question is obviously not aware of the OpenOffice saga.

  • Re:IMHO... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @02:02AM (#41033845)

    You mean, like MariaDB [mariadb.org], as mentioned in the summary (hint: 3rd word) ?

  • Re:MariaDB (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Nethemas the Great (909900) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @02:16AM (#41033917)
    Forks are only drop in replacements for so long. By their very nature they are divergent. Unless they're shepherded by organizations such as the Apache foundation they're also very difficult for corporations to trust and thus adopt.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @02:33AM (#41033973)

    Larry Ellison believes in one thing: making money.

    If publishing test cases doesn't make money for Oracle and they're not required to do it by law (license, etc) then they won't do it.

    Stop pretending Oracle cares about anything other than money and you'll have a much more accurate and healthy view of the beast.

  • Re:IMHO... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Darinbob (1142669) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @02:49AM (#41034031)

    SPOON!

  • by hobarrera (2008506) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @03:01AM (#41034069) Homepage

    MySQL is lighter than PostgreSQL.
    SQLite is an embeded database; it's really a different sort of tool altogether.

  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @03:55AM (#41034221) Homepage

    That's to be expected. The people at Oracle are selling to MBA/Executives who believe the fact that they have heard the brand name and see it everywhere they go means something. It doesn't matter that it's over-priced or that their sales model is not presentative of what they actually deliver, the MBAs see value in expensive things and believe it is worth it. Meanwhile, MySQL had been gaining market share and living in areas where Oracle wants to live. So they buy the product thinking they are buying the real estate it sits on. They know at some level they aren't buying the territory but they think that by boiling the frog, they can somehow get more out of it.

    While Postgres is probably the obvious choice to migrtate into, especially for new projects, I still kind of want to have an M in my LAMP. Stupid, I know, but it's true. I don't want LAPP... bad childhood memories.

    Oracle demonstrated what dumbasses they are with OpenOffice. The community proved there is less value in a name than Oracle want to believe.

    So go ahead, Oracle... buy more names and see what it gets you. In the end we still see everything associated with you as an extension of you and we don't actually LIKE you because of who you are, not what your name is. You'd think with a name like Oracle they would be more insightful than they are.

  • by Anne Thwacks (531696) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @04:04AM (#41034251)
    Oracle is quite fond of slapping their over charged customers with a wet fish from time to time, There is no reason to expect them to "support the community" other than with a millstone round the neck. They never have in the past.

    There is also no sane reason to use mySQL (or Oracle) when PostgreSQL is better than both in almost every respect.

  • by Daniel Dvorkin (106857) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @04:08AM (#41034267) Homepage Journal

    SQLite is an embeded database; it's really a different sort of tool altogether.

    But you don't have to use it embedded. The command line tool is basic but functional, and if you want, say, a web interface to query a SQLite back end, you can do that too. For most of the MySQL use cases, there's really not much difference.

    I worked as a MySQL DBA for years, and I was quite vocal in its defense. Eventually I realized that most of the criticisms of it were entirely reasonable (even if the tone in which they were expressed often wasn't) and that OP is right: use SQLite for stuff that's, well, light, and Postgres for anything that's heavier-duty. The only arguments for MySQL these days are its ubiquity and extensive documentation, and the way Oracle's behaving I don't expect either of those will apply much longer.

  • by etangreal (1050192) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @04:46AM (#41034375) Homepage
    What if Oracle is planning to slowly slowly kill off/degrade MySQL? By with-holding the test cases / not putting in effort into new features/development. If opensource contributors cant test properly - they would create a buggy, unstable/inferior product in the future. According to what I know - Oracle is in the database business, MySQL is "competing" database of sorts... Why would oracle want to keep it around? Its not in their interest, right?
  • by c0lo (1497653) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @04:47AM (#41034383)

    While Postgres is probably the obvious choice to migrtate into, especially for new projects, I still kind of want to have an M in my LAMP. Stupid, I know, but it's true. I don't want LAPP... bad childhood memories.

    Well, MariaDB is still M, is is not?

  • by someones (2687911) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @05:21AM (#41034493)

    WHY is still anyone using mysql, when there is Postgresql?

  • by bmo (77928) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @06:12AM (#41034699)

    For PostgreSQL the only instructions I could find for installing PostgreSQL myself is to build from source

    You don't have access to precompiled postgresql binaries in your repositories? Why? Why are you not using a Linux distro with package management? Why are you not using a Linux distribution that supports postgresql like Ubuntu, Redhat, SuSE, etc?

    FFS, even Pardus supports postgresql.

    And if you're using Windows, Postgresql has a one-click Windows installer.

    I call shenanigans.

    --
    BMO

  • by fisted (2295862) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @06:41AM (#41034797)
    I've tried numerous times to drive a car, and every time i found it less easy than the motorcycle which i'm used to for 10 years.

    Therefore, from an objective point of view it can be concluded that cars are more difficult to drive than motorcycles.

    Thanks for listening, so where's my +5 Insightful like parent has?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 18, 2012 @07:17AM (#41034927)
    You are very right. MySQL is like PHP. That's why people shouldn't use both.

    Avoid stuff where you can have bugs like this:
    http://bugs.mysql.com/bug.php?id=31001
    http://pwnhome.wordpress.com/2011/08/22/php-crypt-bug/
    http://me.veekun.com/blog/2012/04/09/php-a-fractal-of-bad-design/

    And watch the MySQL jokers try to fix this:
    http://bugs.mysql.com/bug.php?id=65111
    And somehow cause this:
    http://bugs.mysql.com/bug.php?id=65745

    I'm a crap programmer, but I prefer to use libraries, tools and languages that are less crap than my stuff. That way at least I spend more time dealing with my own incompetence than someone else's.
  • by mlwmohawk (801821) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @07:41AM (#41034997)

    What you are *really* saying is you think phpmyadmin is better than phppgadmin, which may be perfectly valid. As for "popular," Justin Beeber is currently more "popular" than the Clash.

  • by mlwmohawk (801821) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @08:43AM (#41035297)

    The database really isn't that important. It only becomes important once a DBA gets their hands on it and starts implementing LOGIC at the database instead of doing the logic in the application and fast, dumb, simple queries at the database.

    That is not true at all. In fact wildly wrong. A good database is the tool you use to manage your data. If your system is properly designed, it is part of your application. A good database will manage concurrency, data integrity, and more. The idea that you move this out into the application geometrically increases complexity, or more likely, is ignored at your peril.

    Just a simple query:
    select * from songs where name like 'love%';
    Assuming you have a non-trivial amount of songs, i.e. a song web site, this query can show a poorly implemented index. Once you start getting into sub-selects and joins, a good database can do quite well, a bad database, i.e. MySQL will fall down.

    People who view the database as nothing but dumb storage usually end up implementing similar features in their code. They won't be as efficient, won't be standard, will cause the data to be processed more than it needs to be, and can't be tested as well as the database's system.

    A good architect will know where and when it makes sense to do something in a database verses the application. Ignoring the capabilities of a database for some idealogical purity is ridiculous.

  • by rycamor (194164) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @10:58AM (#41036243)

    While the best option is to get rid of MySQL completely and use the great tools available for PostgreSQL, If you are stuck with MySQL, Adminer is the best thing out there, period. Even though it is web-based, it is a better GUI for MySQL than all the native clients put together. I say this in all seriousness, having had to support MySQL at a large institution for 2 years. Adminer is the only one, for example, that handles UTF-8 correctly. I kid you not. You have to realize that in order to work with MySQL in a full Unicode environment, EVERY SINGLE CONNECTION needs a couple of queries to be run after connecting, and you CANNOT AUTOMATE THIS. Adminer builds that into it's MySQL connection class. This is just one example of the careful thought put into Adminer. Also, the fact that it is web-based is actually a plus, not a negative, because it has a much more standardized way of handling things like copy/paste. Browse a table in Adminer with Firefox, hit the CTRL key, drag the mouse over a column or section of the output, CTRL-C, and you have a perfect spreadsheet-pasteable grid. I haven't been able to find another GUI tool to do this. Adminer FTW.

    Unfortunately, Adminer's PostgreSQL support isn't quite as good as phpPgAdmin, or I would be using it for Postgres. It really has one of the best GUIs I have seen on a web-based app.

  • by rycamor (194164) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @11:12AM (#41036353)

    That is not true at all. In fact wildly wrong. A good database is the tool you use to manage your data. If your system is properly designed, it is part of your application. A good database will manage concurrency, data integrity, and more. The idea that you move this out into the application geometrically increases complexity, or more likely, is ignored at your peril.

    An increasingly unpopular view these days, sadly. It seems to me that with the advent of Agile and NoSQL, critical thinking skills in the development community are going out of style. Notice the original poster decries the idea of "LOGIC" being part of the data management level. That's right, stuff it all ad-hoc into the application layer and then watch things blow up when someone does a manual updated to a table, or someone (inevitably in large corporations) brings another application to connect to that database.

  • by mlwmohawk (801821) on Saturday August 18, 2012 @01:07PM (#41037301)

    you don't have to be a database expert to see that MySQL is still the best supported database back-end for most web application frameworks.

    But it helps if you understand the levels of support and can make an educated decision about whether or not it makes a difference. PostgreSQL, by all meaningful measure, is technically a better database. Choosing MySQL over PostgreSQL, IMHO, is a bad decision for a few reasons: (1) Technically, PostgreSQL is universally regarded as a better technology platform in terms of quality, scalability, performance, flexibility, stability, adherence to SQL standards, etc.. (2) Since Oracle purchased MySQL the TCO has been increasing. (3) Also since MySQL was purchased by Oracle, the GPL-ness of the over-all package is becoming in question. Oracle has the right to stop releasing the product as GPL because of they OWN the copyrights and trademarks. It is not community owned like PostgreSQL.

    So, PostgreSQL is the better technical choice, therefore you should try to use it. If you decide to use MySQL when PostgreSQL would have had more or less equivalent support, you may be painting yourself in a corner needlessly. If you do nothing to avoid the problem and generally accept and cultivate your own ignorance, then you are a bad engineer.

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