Percona Live Europe 2015! Call for speakers; registration open

Percona Live Europe 2015! Call for speakers; registration now openPercona Live is moving from London to Amsterdam this year and the event is also expanding to three full days. Percona Live Europe 2015, September 21-23, will be at the Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre. The call for speakers and Super Saver registration are now open. Hurry though because the deadline for submitting a speaking proposal is June 21st and Super Saver registration ends July 5th!

This year’s conference will feature one day of tutorials and two days of keynote talks and breakout sessions related to MySQL, NoSQL and Data in the Cloud. You’ll get briefed on the hottest topics, learn about operating a high-performing deployment and hear from top-industry leaders describe the future of the ecosystem – encompassing MySQL, MariaDB, Percona Server, MongoDB (and more). Attendees include DBAs, sysadmins, developers, architects, CTOs, CEOs, and vendors from around the world.

Have something to say? Why not lead a breakout session or a tutorial?

Breakout sessions are 50 minutes including a Q&A. Tutorial sessions focus on an immediate and practical application of in-depth MySQL and NoSQL knowledge. Tutorial speakers should assume that attendees will have laptops to work through detailed and potentially hands-on presentations. Tutorials are typically three hours long including a Q&A, however, if you have content for a full day, submissions for 6-hour-long tutorials are also being accepted. If your tutorial or breakout session is approved, you’ll receive a complimentary full-conference pass.

Huge thanks to our Conference Committee!

There would be no Percona Live without the hard work of our conference committees. Meet this year’s Percona Live Europe 2015 Conference Committee – a dedicated group of experts in MySQL, NoSQL and Data in the Cloud:

  • Erik Beebe – Founder and CTO, ObjectRocket
  • Luis Motta Campos – Database Administrator, ebay Classifieds Group
  • Colin Charles – Chief Evangelist, MariaDB
  • César Trigo Esteban – Development Director, Gigigo
  • Kenny Gorman – Chief Technologist; Data. Office of the CTO, Rackspace
  • Amrith Kumar – Founder and CTO, Tesora
  • Giuseppe Maxia – Quality Assurance Architect, VMWare
  • Shlomi Noach – Senior Systems Engineer,
  • Konstantin Osipov – Engineering Manager, Mail.Ru
  • Morgan Tocker – MySQL Community Manager, Oracle
  • Art van Scheppingen – Head of Database Engineering, Spil Games
  • Charity Majors- Production Engineering Manager, Facebook
  • Peter Zaitsev – Co-founder and CEO, Percona


Sponsorship opportunities for Percona Live Europe 2015 are now available. Sponsors become part of a dynamic and fast-growing ecosystem and interact with hundreds of DBAs, sysadmins, developers, CTOs, CEOs, business managers, technology evangelists, solution vendors, and entrepreneurs who typically attend the event. This year’s conference will feature expanded accommodations and turnkey kiosks.

Planning to attend?

Super Saver registration discounts for Percona Live Europe 2015 are available through July 5th (at 11:30 p.m. CEST). Visit the Percona Live Europe 2015 website for more information about the conference. Interested community members can also register to receive email updates about Percona Live Europe 2015.

Percona has also negotiated a special hotel rate at the Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre. If you book your hotel before July 6th your delicious breakfast is included.

I hope to see you in Amsterdam!

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Oracle license revenue and the MySQL ecosystem

Oracle was in the news recently with the story of its license revenue declining as much as 17% in the recent quarter. This is blamed on transitioning to the cloud in some publications, but others, such as Bloomberg and TechRepublic, look deeper, seeing open source software responsible for the bulk of it.

Things are especially interesting in the MySQL ecosystem, as Oracle both owns its traditional “Enterprise” Oracle database and MySQL – a more modern open source database.

At Percona we see the same story repeating among many of our enterprise customers:

  1. MySQL proves itself. This generally happens one of two ways. One is for the enterprise using traditional enterprise databases, such as Oracle or DB2, to acquire a company which has been built on MySQL. After the dust settles the CFO or CIO discovers that the acquired company has been successfully running business-critical operations with MySQL and spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on database support instead of tens of millions. At this point it’s been shown that it can be done, so it should continue.

The other way is for MySQL to rise through the ranks in an organization. Typically it starts with some small MySQL use, such as running a bug tracking application in the IT department. Then it moves to MySQL being used with Drupal to power the main corporate website and an e-commerce function with Magento or something similar. Over time, MySQL proves itself and is trusted to handle more and more “core” enterprise databases that are absolutely critical for the business.

Interestingly enough, contrary to what some people have said, MySQL ownership by Oracle helps it to gain trust with many enterprise accounts. Enterprises may not like Oracle’s license and maintenance fees, but they like Oracle’s quality engineering, attention to security and predictable releases.

  1. New applications are built using MySQL. As the enterprise is ready to embrace MySQL it is added to the approved database list and now internal teams can use it to develop applications. In many cases the mandate goes even further with MySQL than with other open source technologies, as it is given preference, and teams need to really justify to management when they want to use Oracle or other proprietary database technologies. There are some cases when that may be warranted, but in most cases MySQL is good enough.
  1. Moving existing applications from Oracle to MySQL.  Depending on the organization and applications it can happen a couple of different ways. One is the equivalent applications are built from scratch on the new open source technology stack and the old application is retired. The other is only the database is migrated from Oracle to MySQL. Moving the database from Oracle to MySQL might be easy and might be close to a full application rewrite. For example, we see Java applications which often use the database as a simple data store through the ORM framework which can be moved to MySQL easily; on the other hand, applications built with extensive use of advanced stored procedures and Oracle-specific SQL extensions are much harder to move.

The wave of moving to open source database technologies will continue and we’re not alone in thinking that – Gartner believes that by 2018, 70% of new in-house applications will be built on open source database systems.

What are we currently seeing in the MySQL ecosystem? First, many customers tell us that they are looking at hefty price increases for MySQL support subscriptions. Some of the customers which had previously signed 5 year agreements with Sun (at the time it was acquired by Oracle) who are exploring renewing now, see price increases as much as 5x for a comparable environment. This is very understandable considering the pressures Oracle has on the market right now.

The issues, however, go deeper than the price. Many customers are not comfortable trusting Oracle to give them the best possible advice for moving from expensive Oracle to a much less expensive Oracle MySQL database. The conflicts are obvious when the highest financial reward comes to Oracle by proving applications can’t be moved to MySQL or any other open source database.

If you’re choosing MySQL, Oracle is financially interested in having you use the Enterprise Edition, which brings back many of the vendor lock-in issues enterprises are trying to avoid by moving to open source databases. Customers believe Oracle will ensure enterprise-only features are put in use in the applications, making it difficult to avoid renewing at escalating prices.

So what do our customers see in Percona which makes them prefer our support and other services to those of Oracle?

  • We are a great partner if you’re considering moving from the Oracle database to MySQL as we both have years of experience and no conflict of interest.
  • Percona Server, Percona XtraDB Cluster, Percona Xtrabackup and our other software for the MySQL ecosystem is 100% open source, which means we’re not trying to lock you into the “enterprise version” as we work together. Furthermore, many of the features which are only available in MySQL Enterprise Edition are available in the fully open source Percona Server, including audit, backup and authentication.
  • We are focused on solutions for your business, not pushing Percona-branded technology. If you choose to use Percona Server, great! If you are using MySQL, MariaDB, Amazon RDS, etc., that’s great too.

With the continuing trend of moving to open source database management systems the cost pressures on people running proprietary databases will continue to increase, and the only real solution is to accelerate moving to the open source stack. As you do that, you’re better off moving to completely open source technology, such as what is available from Percona, to avoid vendor lock-in. If you’re looking for the partner to help you to assess the migration strategy and execute the move successfully, check for conflicts of interests and ensure the interests of your and your provider are completely aligned.

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New MySQL features, related technologies at Percona Live London

Call for papers: Percona Live LondonThe upcoming Percona Live London conference, November 11-12, features quite a number of talks about the latest MySQL features and related technologies. There will be a lots of talks about the new MySQL 5.6 features:

  • Opening keynote highlights MySQL 5.6 new features.
  • New InnoDB Compression talk will cover the new compression algorithm, implemented by Facebook and included in MySQL 5.6.
  • New MySQL Replication features, including multi-treaded slave applier, Global Transaction Ids which can help for automatic failover and lots of performance optimizations and much).

Altho MySQL 5.6 is a very important milestone there are much more interesting technologies going on around MySQL. Here are some of the talks, which look pretty interesting (at least for me):

NoSQL World


Hadoop is a relatively new topic at MySQL conferences, however, it gains more and more traction, especially after MySQL applier for Hadoop (alpha version) release. Danil  Zburivsky will be talking about building a data warehouse with Hadoop and MySQL. I personally have a strong interest in Hadoop and recently  did a webinar about this topic. Hadoop concept is very different from MySQL, but there are a lots of real use cases where Hadoop will fit best.


MongoDB is a another interesting technology. There will be full MongoDB tutorial by Stephane Combaudon as well as MongoDB for MySQL Guru talk by Robert Hodges (Continuent) and Tim Callaghan (Tokutek)

New MySQL Cluster features.

MySQL Cluster 7.3 (based on  a mainline MySQL Server 5.6 release + NDBCluster storage engine) was recently released. Johan Andersson will cover some new MySQL Cluster 7.3 features in his MySQL Cluster Performance Tuning talk, including foreign key constrains (Foreign key constrains were the “showstopper” for many customers), memcached integration, etc. I knew Johan from the early MySQL Ab days and he always was (and now is) “the MySQL Cluster guy”, so I’m sure he will show some new MySQL cluster magic.

Other Storage Engines

TokuDB features the fractal tree and compression. Vadim blogged about using TokuDB  for storing timeseries data and it looks promising. Tim Callaghan of Tokutek will talk about Fractal Tree Indexes.

MariaDB contains the CONNECT engine (to join data between Oracle and Cassandra for example) and SPIDER storage engine (for automatic “sharding”). Colin Charles from Monty Program Ab will talk about new MariaDB features

Percona Live London is approaching fast so be sure to register today!

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Percona Server 5.6 Webinar follow-up and Q&A

Good news everyone! I recently presented a webinar: Percona Server 5.6: Enterprise Grade MySQL. It was also recorded so you can watch along or view the slide deck. As with all my talks, I am not simply reading the slides so it really is worth to listen to the audio rather than just glance through the slide deck.

There were a number of great questions asked which I’ll answer below:

Q: How does Stewart feel about this version of 5.6 taking into consideration “Stewart’s .20 rule?” (ref 2013 Percona Live Conference).

A: For those who aren’t familiar with it, I have a rule which I call “Stewart’s dot twenty rule” which I’ve posted a few times about on my personal blog. It states: “a piece of software is never really mature until a dot twenty release.” I would say that MySQL 5.6 (and Percona Server 5.6) are both in really good states currently.

I strongly recommend the excellent series of “Fun With Bugs” posts by Valeriy Kravchuk. The latest Fun With Bugs post is: Fun with Bugs #20 – welcome MySQL 5.6.13! and certainly worth a read. I’m rather safe in saying that the first GA release of MySQL 5.6 was by far the best first GA release of any MySQL version ever and subsequent MySQL 5.6 releases have improved upon that. It is quite likely that 5.6 will work perfectly for you today.

If you are really conservative with software upgrades and want as few surprises as possible, then you can of course wait – but I’d certainly recommend kicking the tyres of 5.6 over the next few months and starting to plan a migration.

Q: Any estimate on availability of XtraDB Cluster using 5.6?

A: Since Percona XtraDB Cluster is built upon both Percona Server and Galera it’s only natural to build upon a GA release of Percona Server and a GA release of Galera.

Q: What’s the birds name?

Spike the cockatiel

Spike the cockatiel

A: (Background: at one point during the Webinar you could hear one of our pet birds start to burst into song). I’m glad you asked as it gives me an excellent opportunity to include gratuitous photos of our birds! They’re both Cockatiels. People will often think cockatoo (specifically the Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo)and not cockatiel. A cockatoo is any of the 21 species belonging to the bird family Cacatuidae and the cockatiel is the smallest of the 21 species.

Beaker helping out with our next release

Beaker the cockatiel helping with Percona Server 5.6

We have both a boy (Spike) and a girl (Beaker). Spike is the one who sings (while Beaker, like the muppet, goes meep) and could be heard for a moment during the webinar. Beaker has also been spotted helping with Percona Server 5.6 releases.

Q: The ‘first in Percona Server’ optimizations, did Oracle implement Percona code or write their own?

A: It would be accurate to say that there are changes in MySQL 5.6 that have been inspired by our work, and previously there has been Percona code that has made its way into MySQL (see COPYING.Percona in the MySQL bzr repository). For a multitude of reasons that aren’t worth going into here, it has historically been problematic getting code into MySQL if you didn’t work for the company that owned MySQL. This has been true of MySQL AB, Sun and Oracle and is certainly nothing new or unique to Oracle. What is different now is that things seem to be changing for the better and there is likely to be more cooperation with Oracle going forward.

Q: Has HandlerSocket been cooked into your 5.6 releases yet? Have there been any other improvements on that front?

A: We don’t currently have HandlerSocket in Percona Server 5.6. There has been a very small amount of adoption of HandlerSocket and we’ve taken the approach that we’ll see if the HandlerSocket team ports to 5.6 and if there is adequate demand for HandlerSocket in 5.6. So far, you’re the first person to request it.

Q: What Oracle 5.6 features have not yet been copied or reimplemented in Percona 5.6?

A: Everything in Oracle MySQL 5.6 is in Percona Server 5.6 and has been from the very first Percona Server 5.6 release.

Q: Was innodb fake changes picked up by Oracle?

A: No, at least not yet :)

Q: Has Percona developed or found some solutions for migrating a production Percona server 5.5 to a production Percona server 5.6 without any downtime. Previously I solved this by making a newer version of Percona server as a replica of an older version of either Percona server or mysql db. Then I would point the application servers to the new replica to complete the deployment with a trivial downtime. It seems like this approach is not valid given the new replication design.

A: You can do the old replication trick

Q: Can Xtrabackup 5.6 be used on a system running Percona Server 5.5?

A: Percona XtraBackup 2.1 (the current stable release, which works with MySQL 5.6 and Percona Server 5.6) will also work with MySQL 5.5, Percona Server 5.5, Percona Server 5.1 and MySQL 5.1 running the innodb plugin. There is also support for various MariaDB versions.

Q: question on replication: my database has no partitioned table, multi-thread replication (feature of 5.6) is not going to help. Am I right?

A: Currently the multi-threaded replication slave will partition work up across database schema. It doesn’t matter if your tables are partitioned or not, it matters what database (schema) they’re in. If all your tables are in the same schema, then parallel slave will not currently help.

Q: Is Percona Server 5.6 a drop in replacement for 5.5 or is there an upgrade process? If so, what is involved to roll back to 5.5 if necessary?

A: The upgrade process should be fairly painless and could well be a simple drop-in replacement. It does, of course, depend on what features you may be using along with the type and size of workload. We have a In-Place upgrading from Percona Server 5.5 to Percona Server 5.6 section in our Percona Server 5.6 manual and along with the Changed in Percona Server 5.6 section this should provide a fair amount of insight into what you may expect from the Percona Server side of things. There is also the Upgrading from MySQL 5.5 to 5.6 section of the MySQL manual which is well worth a read.

There is a section in the MySQL manual on downgrading from 5.6 to 5.5 and I don’t think there should be any extra limitations imposed by Percona Server on going from 5.6 back to 5.5. That being said, downgrading is certainly not as well tested as upgrading and I would consider it more of a last resort than something to jump to quickly.

Q: When does production Percona server 5.6 release?

A: Soon. The current Percona Server 5.6 releases are fairly solid and I can certainly recommend trialling them.

Q: Are there any known mysqllib binding issues or deprecations for 5.6?

A: None that I’m aware of.

Q: Is there a white paper or other docs on migratiing from 5.1 Percona server to 5.6 Percona server?

A: Not currently. Generally, the recommended practice is to go through each major version (going through 5.5 before heading to 5.6). There is upgrade documentation for upgrading 5.1 to 5.5 and for 5.5 to 5.6 – and you can certainly run 5.5 for only a few minutes before upgrading to 5.6.

Q: Will you offer training on 5.6?

A: Yes! There is a Moving to MySQL 5.6 training course offered by Percona which covers both MySQL 5.6 and Percona Server 5.6.

Q: I didn’t notice any mention of the improved NUMA support in PS 5.5 ( Is this carried over to Oracle and/or Percona 5.6?

A: Yes it has made it into Percona Server 5.6. See for the 5.6 documentation on it. I am not aware of Oracle having implemented it though.

Q: Have you made tests of user_stats overhead compared to performance_schema in 5.6?

A: I’m not aware of any published benchmarks for 5.6 although it would be great to see some.

Q: Does this release support the live table changes?

A: For some types of changes, yes.

Q: Is “Warning: Using a password on the command line interface can be insecure.” error being filtered out in the Percona release?

A: No. It’s not a good idea to provide passwords on the command line.

Q: He also promised a migration blog post ;-)

A: As promised, I am right now going to pester people about writing various posts on migrating from 5.5 to 5.6.

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