Choosing the right database with Rackspace Cloud Databases


Cloud Databases supports MySQL 5.6, Percona 5.6, and MariaDB 10. Innovation is happening in each of these communities, and this article highlights some of the key aspects to consider when choosing a MySQL based datastore that best fits your application.

MySQL

MySQL, an open-source database developed by Oracle, is the recommended choice of the MySQL database administrator community, and is a good fit for customers concerned about maintaining compatibility with upstream, and who prefer a quick release schedule for upstream updates. MySQL 5.6 is the latest version that is in general availability (since February 2013). MySQL 5.6 offers great improvements in performance, InnoDB scalability, transparency, and replication. For more information, see the MySQL documentation.

Percona server

Percona Server is a good solution for customers who want improved performance right out of the box and want to maintain close (but not exact) compatibility with the upstream source. It has many optimizer improvements when compared to the upstream MySQL. Percona Server includes XtraDB, a drop-in replacement for InnoDB with many optimizations that improve performance on multicore systems. For more information, see the Percona Server documentation.

MariaDB

MariaDB was developed by many of the original developers of MySQL, and has a long-term goal of maintaining compatibility with MySQL. It is a good database choice for customers who are less concerned with maintaining direct compatibility with upstream, and it offers the best performance and features out of the box. It does not merge with code provided by upstream, but attempts to re-implement features as they are released, if they were not already provided. MariaDB contains the best optimizer performance of all three solutions and has the largest selection of storage engines by default. For more information, see the MariaDB documentation.

The following table displays the major features and differences among MySQL, Percona Server, and MariaDB 10.

  MySQL 5.6 Percona Server 5.6 MariaDB 10

Pros

Upstream controlled by Oracle

  • Drop-in replacement for MySQL

  • Remerges with upstream source code after each new MySQL release, to maintain compatibility

  • Includes community patching

  • Improved performance on multiprocessor systems

  • Improved query optimizer

  • Increased log verbosity options, status and performance counters, and increased INFORMATION_SCHEMA content

  • Thread pool option without the need for Enterprise MySQL

  • Drop-in replacement for MySQL

  • Re-implements features as they are released by Oracle

  • Fork of MySQL with many new features and a long-term goal to maintain binary compatibility

  • Includes community patching

  • Improved performance on multiprocessor systems

  • Improved query optimizer

  • Increased log verbosity options, status and performance counters, and increased INFORMATION_SCHEMA content

  • Thread pool option without the need of Enterprise MySQL

  • Increased Quantity of Storage Engines by default

Cons

Bug fixes are delayed behind forks that might have already been resolved by community patches

After using features specific to Percona, you might not be able to directly roll back the database

  • After using features specific to MariaDB, you might not be able to directly roll back the database

  • Started from MySQL upstream, but much of the MySQL source code has been directly modified

  • Inmany cases, upstream bugs are already resolved, but not in all cases and you might need to await re-implementation of the patch



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