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April 27, 2004

"High Performance MySQL": Advanced Tools and Techniques for Running MySQL

Sebastopol, CA--Always popular in Linux and open source communities, MySQL has also made significant inroads into the commercial sector, its rapid adoption owing primarily to its reputation for being fast, easy to run, and cost-effective. As a consequence, many MySQL users and administrators will tend to slide into using it: they find themselves working with MySQL without much forethought, training, or other preparation. As Jeremy Zawodny and Derek Balling observe in High Performance MySQL (O'Reilly, US $39.95), "They hear its benefits, find that it's easy to install on their systems (or better yet, comes pre-installed), and read a quick book on how to attach simple SQL operations to web sites or other applications."

And, in fact, MySQL's repute is well earned; in the beginning, at least, administering it can be relatively unchallenging. But as Zawodny and Balling explain, "Real-life use of MySQL requires forethought and care--and a little benchmarking and testing. This book is for the MySQL administrator who has the basics down but realizes the need to go further. It's a good book to read after you've installed and learned how to use MySQL but before your site starts to get a lot of traffic, and the dragons are breathing down your neck." The problems may first surface in many forms. Perhaps one particular web page seems to take forever to load, or a system failure corrupts a database and makes recovery difficult. When these problems occur during a critical service, note the authors, one's fellow workers and friendly manager start to take on decidedly dragon-like appearances.

"More and more companies are beginning to build serious, mission critical applications or web sites on top of MySQL," adds Zawodny. "As they do this, they're likely going to have questions not answered in introductory MySQL books. Whether it's configuring replication, choosing among MySQL's storage engines, or implementing load-balancing, we wrote this book to help answer those questions."

High Performance MySQL helps readers understand the factors that affect MySQL performance and apply that knowledge to their own servers. The authors explain MySQL indexing and optimization in depth so readers will be better able to use these key features. The book then covers practical replication, backup, and load-balancing strategies, exploring available tools in detail with additional discussions of the issues surrounding their use in real-life environments. Finally, readers will learn the supporting techniques they need to carry out these tasks, including advanced configuration, benchmarking, and investigating logs.

Topics covered in the book include:

  • Configuration and setup options
  • Storage engines and table types
  • Benchmarking
  • Indexes
  • Query Optimization
  • Application Design
  • Server Performance
  • Replication
  • Load-balancing
  • Backup and Recovery
  • Security
  • "Now more than ever, MySQL is being used in larger and more visible roles," says Zawodny. "Bigger applications demand the kind of performance and reliability that MySQL can provide--if you apply it correctly. This book helps developers understand what it takes to make MySQL work in larger and more critical environments."

    Additional Resources:

    High Performance MySQL
    Jeremy D. Zawodny and Derek J. Balling
    ISBN 0-596-00306-4, 276 pages, $39.95 US, $57.95 CA
    order@oreilly.com
    1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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