Tuesday, 25 October 2005

Announcing MySQL 5.0

Dear user of MySQL,

It is my pleasure to announce the production release of MySQL 5.0, which is hereby GA (Generally Available). Since my announcement of the Release Candidate less than a month ago, no bugs have been reported that require a second Release Candidate. This, combined with the feedback from over two million downloads of MySQL 5.0 during its beta phase, give us the confidence to give MySQL 5.0 the status of Current Production Release, or GA.

In the Release Candidate announcement less than a month ago, I described MySQL 5.0 as "the most important release in MySQL's history", and that is certainly the case. Thus, I encourage you all to:

  • get your own copy at http://dev.mysql.com/downloads/mysql/5.0.html

  • do all of your new database development using MySQL 5.0
  • upgrade your current MySQL environments to MySQL 5.0, as soon as you've properly verified your production applications against it (be sure to take a full backup of your data before upgrading, study the relevant documentation, and if you have a MySQL Network support contract, consult first with the MySQL Support Team)

Let me also underline that we continue to offer some earlier versions of MySQL Server for download. However, you should expect maintenance releases for earlier versions only in limited form:

  • for MySQL 4.1, only when serious bugs affecting significant user groups are reported

  • for MySQL 4.0, only when security bugs are reported

MySQL 5.0 is the most ambitious release to date for MySQL AB. We have added functionality that our users have requested from us over many years. However, everything we do at MySQL centers around our three priorities of Performance, Reliability, and Ease of Use. MySQL 5.0 is certainly true to these company-wide values.

Key new features of MySQL 5.0 come in three groups:

  1. ANSI SQL standard features formerly unknown to MySQL

  2. ANSI SQL standard compliance of existing MySQL features

  3. New MySQL Storage Engines, Tools and Extensions

1. The new ANSI SQL features include:

  • Views (both read-only and updatable views)

  • Stored Procedures and Stored Functions, using the SQL:2003 syntax, which is also used by IBM's DB2

  • Triggers (row-level)

  • Server-side cursors (read-only, non-scrolling)

2. Implementing ANSI SQL standard ways of using existing MySQL features means there will be fewer unpleasant surprises ("gotchas") for those migrating to MySQL from other database systems:

  • Strict Mode: MySQL 5.0 adds a mode that complies with standard SQL in a number of areas in which earlier versions did not; we now do strict data type checking and issue errors for all invalid dates, numbers and strings as expected

  • INFORMATION_SCHEMA: An ANSI SQL-compliant set of tables that provide database metadata, in parallel with the MySQL-specific SHOW commands

  • Precision Math: A new library for fixed-point arithmetic, giving high accuracy for financial and mathematical operations

  • VARCHAR Data Type: The maximum effective length of a VARCHAR column has increased to 65,532 bytes; also, stripping of trailing whitespace no longer occurs

3. New MySQL Storage Engines, Tools and Extensions are:

  • XA Distributed Transactions

  • ARCHIVE Storage Engine for storing large amounts of data without
    indexes in a very small footprint, intended for historical data that
    may be needed for future audit compliance (Sarbanes Oxley or

  • FEDERATED Storage Engine for accessing data ín tables of remote
    databases rather than in local tables (only in MAX version)

  • Instance Manager: a tool to start and stop MySQL Server, even remotely

To find out more details on what's new in MySQL 5.0, follow the pointers from http://dev.mysql.com/doc/mysql/en/mysql-5-0-nutshell.html

To find out the changes specific to MySQL 5.0.15 in relation to 5.0.13 (the release candidate), see the two files http://dev.mysql.com/doc/mysql/en/news-5-0-14.html and http://dev.mysql.com/doc/mysql/en/news-5-0-15.html (5.0.14 was not released publicly).

MySQL 5.0 is also reflected in our GUI tools and Connectors:

MySQL Administrator 1.1.4 and MySQL Query Browser 1.1.17 are aware of the new MySQL 5.0 features. They can be used to write and test stored procedures, create views, include them in scheduled backups and much more.

The latest shipping versions of our Connectors work with MySQL 5.0, and all connectors (MySQL Connector/ODBC, Connector/J and Connector/NET) support all MySQL 5.0 flagship features.

Of course, we recognize that any piece of software contains bugs. We continue to need your involvement to ensure that MySQL 5.0 is the best that it possibly can be. Should you find any issues in MySQL 5.0, report them through our bug-reporting system at http://bugs.mysql.com/ and we will improve upon MySQL 5.0 in upcoming maintenance releases.

The MySQL team looks forward to your input

MySQL 5.0 is available now. Go download it, install it, and take benefit from its many new features.

And do keep us informed on how MySQL can help support you!

Kaj Arnö
VP Community Relations

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