MySQL 3.23 Declared Stable


MySQL, the worlds most widely used Open Source Database, version 3.23, is now declared stable. It's been almost two years since the previous version 3.22 was declared stable in January 1999. This means that MySQL 3.23 can now be safely used in production environments. Version 3.23 was released under the GNU GPL-license in June 2000 and has been available in several pre-stable versions ever since.

Apart from being more stable, more optimized and more portable, the MySQL 3.23 release has several major features not present in the 3.22 or 3.21 releases. These include: full-text search, replication between a master and many slaves and several new table handlers that support large files and transactions by using the Berkeley DB library from Sleepycat Software to implement transaction-safe tables.

Chief developer Michael "Monty" Widenius and the MySQL Development Team will now focus on the upcoming 4.0 version of MySQL. The only future changes in version 3.23 will include bug fixes and some fine tuning of the replication and BerkeleyDB code.

To download MySQL 3.23:

For a complete changelog of MySQL 3.23:

To upgrade from MySQL 3.22:

Below is a list of the major new features in MySQL 3.23:

  • New Table Handlers
    • MyISAM is a new SQL tuned ISAM library. MyISAM is the now the default for MySQL tables (MySQL 3.23 is still backwards compatible with ISAM). MyISAM provides increased performance and support for 64bit OS's (thus supporting large files).
    • BDB is the Berkeley Database table type. BDB adds support for SQL transactions (COMMIT, ROLLBACK). Thus allowing BDB tables to survive crashes. BDB tables also support page-level locking.
    • HEAP tables are new in-memory table types. They can be used for extremely fast look-up tables.
    • MERGE tables are a collection of identical MyISAM tables that can be used as one for SELECT, DELETE, UPDATE statements. MERGE tables can help you manage a set of large log tables -- helping to bypass many constraints associated with large tables.

    Any of these table types can be mixed and matched for use in MySQL 3.23 (specified at the CREATE TABLE ... TYPE={MYISAM, BDB, HEAP, MERGE} SQL statement). This gives Database Administrators the option to have the most optimized database setup to suit their specific needs.

  • Replication

    One way replication can be used is to increase both robustness and speed. For robustness two (or more) systems can used to switch to a backup server if you have problems with the master. The extra speed is achieved by sending part of the non-updating queries to the replica server.

    Replication can also benefit database backup operations. Live backups of the system can be done on a slave instead of a master, eliminating potential problems and possible downtime.

  • Full-text Search

    MySQL 3.23 now has full-text indexing and searching capabilities. This allows you to search your vast databases of textual information, with queries returning search string occurrence/relevance.

  • Online Table Maintenance

    MySQL 3.23 now incorporates many of the table maintanence features of the (previously only external) utilities `(my)isamchk' directly into the MySQL server.

    The use of these newly incorporated features can help to eliminate system downtime, by allowing the Database Administrator to repair damaged tables without shutting-down the MySQL server.