Press releases

"MySQL Reference Manual"--Documentation Straight From the Source: O'Reilly Community Press Releases Its First Title

Press release: June 6, 2002

Sebastopol, CA--With more than three million installations, MySQL is one of the most widely used databases in the world. Its popularity stems from its reputation as a powerful and flexible database that is also lightweight and efficient. Although complete online documentation is provided for MySQL, and many books have been published on how to get the most from the program, for the first time the official documentation is appearing in print, straight from the MySQL team and O'Reilly Community Press. The MySQL Reference Manual coauthored by Michael "Monty" Widenius, David Axmark, and MySQL AB (O'Reilly, US $39.95) provides a comprehensive guide to virtually every aspect of the open source database's functionality and usage.

Written by the core MySQL developers, and read by thousands of MySQL users, the "MySQL Reference Manual" covers all stages of MySQL use from installation through performance tuning. It includes a great deal of advanced information, including suggested uses of privileges to enhance security, performance tips, and a sophisticated guide to error recovery. The book also offers a thorough comparison of MySQL with SQL standards and other databases.

"David Axmark and I provided the primary content and direction for this book, but it really reflects the vast collective knowledge of many talented MySQL experts at MySQL AB, as well as contributions from other prominent MySQL authorities, such as Paul Dubois," says Widenius, who is also MySQL's CTO. "The printed version of our highly used reference manual will be an essential resource for any MySQL user, and it will complement the wide selection of MySQL books that are currently available."

Designed to be the definitive resource for anyone using MySQL, the book also covers:

  • Directions for replicating a database and for running several MySQL servers on a single system
  • Directions for initializing a database from a flat file
  • Guidelines for estimating the performance of different queries
  • A far-reaching discussion of optimization, with reference to the implementation of MySQL
  • Investigations of the differences between data types and the pros and cons of each type of number, string, or timestamp
  • An extended inquiry into the effects of using delayed inserts
  • A candid explanation of why various errors occur and how to recover from them
  • Tips for weighted, full-text searches
  • Detailed descriptions of the features, strengths, and weaknesses of available table formats
  • A guide to adding new functions to MySQL

The "MySQL Reference Manual" is the first release in a new series from O'Reilly Community Press. Unlike classic O'Reilly animal books, which are created to fill an information void, the Community Press titles provide convenient printed copies of documentation that is already available online. O'Reilly's role in the series is limited to providing manufacturing and distribution services rather than editorial development, so that each Community Press title reflects the editorial voice and organization of the community that has created it. Consequently, the covers of the Community Press titles are distinct from the familiar animal covers, featuring a line drawing of an oak tree against a brown background, which longtime O'Reilly readers will recognize as a direct descendent of early O'Reilly Nutshell handbook covers.

The "MySQL Reference Manual" is an exact reproduction of the official reference manual from the MySQL AB site,, minus some non-technical appendixes. It covers MySQL 3.23 and MySQL 4.0. Providing complete documentation for beginning and experienced users alike, this is a book that no serious MySQL user will want to be without.

Additional resources:

MySQL Reference Manual
By Michael "Monty" Widenius, David Axmark, and MySQL AB
ISBN 0-596-00265-3, 802 pages, $39.95 (US), $61.95 (CAN)
1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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