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MySQL versions

Posted on 2009-02-21
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We had a discussion with our operations last week regarding to what MySQL server to install to develop a new application for one of our clients. Currently we use a 4.1.22 version and definitely we need a version higher than 5.0 as we are going to need to built views and maybe stored procedures. We are talking about Linux as OS.

As DBA my idea was to go for the last released version, which I think it is 5.1.31 but the guys from Operations said that they would like to stick with the 5.0.66 version because we already use that for another client. They want to keep a consistency in regards with the MySQL version we they install and we use at our company.

I have to admit that 5.0.66 already has the feature that we will need to implement this application and if an upgrade is anyway imminent for that client then why not use the last version of MySQL.

My question is how justified is that position to keep a consistency over the MySQL servers? What exactly would be the overheads in order to maintain different versions of MySQL from the application, operations and maintenance points of view.

As a DBA I see no problems to go directly to 5.1.31 if we upgrade anyway this client.
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Question by:Zberteoc
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Assisted Solution

by:Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]
Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3] earned 400 total points
ID: 23700310
> but the guys from Operations said that they would like to stick with the 5.0.66 version because we already use that for another client.
if you have only 2 clients for that same thing, that is a defendable argument.

however, sooner or later you will get more clients, or at least 1 client/installation requesting you to upgrade to another version, while others might refuse that...
... hence requesting you to "invest" some time/resources in the management of the different versions anyhow.
so, why not start today.
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by:Zberteoc
ID: 23700414
That's what I said but they replied that we will do it when that time will come. For me is totally nonsense as we already use 2 versions anyway. Upgrading one to the last version will get us in the same position.

The only valid reason might be that they already have their installation/configuration scripts adapted for the 5.0.66 release from when they had to install it for the other client, which kind of make sense. In that case my question is how difficult is to adapt those scripts if they really need any modifications at all.

As I see it you just get a different installation kit and go with it, regardless of the version.
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Expert Comment

by:Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]
ID: 23700445
the differences in the mysql versions mentioned should actually be so minor that the ddl should not differ, aka what works in the 5.0.66 should also work in the 5.1.31 version.

to know for sure:
just test run on a spare test server...
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by:Zberteoc
ID: 23700468
I agree, but I am not talking about DDL here but about installations/configuration scripts they might use when preparing the box. They are the ones that install Linux and what software needed for any new server.

In regards to the application there will still be some differences, minor as you said, no matter if we upgrade to 5.0.66 or to 5.1.31. So from this respect 5.1.31 would be still preferable.

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Umesh earned 800 total points
ID: 23700543
But I don't suggest you to go for 5.1.31 directly into production.  Its buggy and needs lots of fixes. Also, note that you are migrating from 4.1 to 5.0( or 5.1.31) which is major upgrade  and needs lots of testing before pushing this to production or live environment.

See what MySQL founder has to say about 5.1.x

http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Database/MySQL-Founder-Monty-Widenius-Leaves-Sun-Microsystems-For-Real-This-Time/

Anyways, its up to you but If I had to do this.. I would have preferred first 4.x to 5.0.x in staging  and once verified all the things pushed to Live/production.
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by:arnold
arnold earned 800 total points
ID: 23700602
Here is an alternate approach from the operations point.
What OS is being deployed? RHEL/Centos 5, ubuntu server, etc.? The preference is to have the mysql that comes with the OS version distribution.  This way vendor issued updates will not have an impact on the operations of the installed application.

The other point, is that operations needs to be sufficiently familiar with the newer version to quickly troubleshoot issues to determine whether the issue is the database or something else. Whether the server can be further tunned to enhance the performance.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Zberteoc
ID: 31549582
I think I got the answer now. Arnold seems to have pointed out the main issue here that of the operation point of view, which I really needed to understand.

Thank you usharty and angel for the links, very informative, and for your answers.
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