Why not to use MySQL

In: Web development

6 Sep 2004

MySQL probably is the lowest common denominator for a RDBMS in the webhosting world – you can’t leave /home without it. This blog wouldn’t exist without MySQL (someday WordPress will be database-independent). Sometimes I hear people say MySQL isn’t a real RDBMS, or that it lacks certain features that causes it to suck™. I work extensively with MySQL and there are times when I wish for stuff like referential integrity (available with InnoDB tables, but most hosts don’t provide it) so I don’t have to code constraint checks in the application. I wish for transactions (again supported by InnoDB). I wish for a PL/SQL equivalent.

Now, these guys, they’ve got MySQL gotchas and an anti-MySQL list listing some niggly inconsistencies and general bad behavior in MySQL. And after reading that, I’ll never trust what MySQL does to my data again (silently change my data would you, mysqld?).

(Yes, the entry title is grammatically incorrect on purpose.)

17 Responses to Why not to use MySQL


Dichotomy's Purgatory

September 7th, 2004 at 1am

MySQL Scrutiny
MySQL Gotchas and ACM’s anti-MySQL list (via redemption in a blog – Why not to use MySQL). It’s amazing what scrutiny gets applied……



September 7th, 2004 at 1am

I always encourage people NOT to use MySQL: use PostgreSQL or Firebird (not Mozilla Firesomething) instead…


ubiquitous minghong - My Blogger

September 7th, 2004 at 2am

MySQL Considered Harmful
If you are serious about database, keep your hand out of MySQL – the World’s worst RDBMS.
Despite of its high popularity, it is a database software that doesn’t even meet the basic requirement of RDBMS – Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durabi…



September 7th, 2004 at 4am

MySQL Kicks Puppies And Steals From The Elderly
Chu Yeow rounds up a couple of sites that have a bone to pick with MySQL. They outline a couple of them that I didn’t know about that sound like real scalability problems, like: Making changes to a table definition…


Stephan Segraves

September 7th, 2004 at 11am

After working with InnoDB almost exclusively I understand the pain that you feel when using MyISAM tables.

I don’t think that PL/SQL is all that great, but that’s because I am a fan of the ANSI standard ;-)



September 7th, 2004 at 12pm

In my opinion it’s a lot of huff and puff over something that isn’t going to matter to the vast majority of people out there. It’s like the people who believe we should all use RDF and XML instead of HTML. Yes, it’s so much better and richer and it’ll enable all these great things, but in the meantime I have work to get done and I have tens of millions of rows in MySQL that do it.


Stephan Segraves

September 8th, 2004 at 12am


But some of the huff and puff allows me to get my work done. Being able to lock rows and commit transactions allows me to do the database work where it needs to be done (in the database) instead of having to write server side code to accomplish something similiar.

True, it is a small minority of us who use these things but after working with Oracle (or DB2) you kind of become dependent on it.



September 8th, 2004 at 1am

mysql is like a text file. it’s simplicity and popularity is gained from it’s lack of features and interface productivity.


Shantanu Oak

September 17th, 2004 at 12am

The glitches mentioned are “Known issues”. The only problem is that it is not made clear upfront to the new users. They learn as they come across problems.



October 13th, 2004 at 11am

I’m just begining my mysql & php journey. My first step was to set up a development machine. I spent a lot of time on bad info, like being told that php & mysql wouldn’t run on PWS. Hogwash!!! It runs just fine, once you find out how, in fact one of the biggest time wasters for me was the A-Patch-E server (Apache), I never did get it to work on windows, what a joke. I tried 3 different bundles, plus doing it individual. Zip, Ziltch, and Zero



Edgard Durand

October 16th, 2004 at 10am

As a web designer and php programmer I’m very grateful to MySQL. I think that if someone wants more advanced or secure features, they will have to pay for them, like a lot of companies do, running commercial databases for their websites.


Don Corleone

March 26th, 2005 at 4am

MySQL’s a rotten database??? C’mon!!!

Our company uses MySQL and its really quick as compared to Oracle and DB2. I agree that it doesnt provide front-end financial applications (for example currency conversion tables) like Oracle does but I completely disagree that MySQL is insecure.

You have to set passwords and keep checks. While MySQL guarantees the persistence and reliability of data it’s the users responsibility to ensure that he is keeping his data secure. MySQL has commands to do that but it doesnt enforce it unless you tell it to. Dont blame MySQL for your short-sightedness.



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