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Re: [debian-mysql] MySQL's future in Debian and Ubuntu


Finally! A post that makes all wrong points!

On 2012-02-17 11:53, Björn Boschman wrote:
Hi Alex,

Am 16.02.2012 19:33, schrieb Alex Esterkin:
As an end user, I would most strongly dislike this. You clearly don't
understand how corporate users think and operate, how they work with
open source technologies, and how they plan and evolve their technical

I think I understand a bit of how corporate users think and operate.

When you are an enterprise user who has subscribed support from MySQL
via Oracle you are enforced to use the Oracle binaries and cannot just
use the distribution supplied binaries at all.
This includes bugfixes and security fixes from your vendor, in this
case Oracle (not Debian or any other distribution).

When you do not have such a subscription you rely on the support from
your distribution.

Heaven, no! Otherwise I'd still be using MySQL 5.0.something on CentOS 5. And nobody wants that!

Of course, I'm relying on Oracle to provide the latest security and bug fixes. Whoever wants/needs to run MySQL 5.5 has long given up on "their" distribution. And, really, why/how should I rely on somebody else but the vendor to fix his program?

That's the point this whole discussion is about.
Neighter Debian nor Ubuntu can offer reliable bugfixes and security

Indeed, because, in general, they are not qualified to, and are not supposed to be. Their main task should be packaging and integration of software to allow painless installation and use. Key word here is 'painless'. And with respect to MySQL Linux distributions don't do that great of a job, because they are focusing on something they should not. And while Oracle fills in for RPM-based distros, Debian/Ubuntu users are on their own.

Not because they don't want to.

And they better don't.

I may not understand much about corporate users thinking, but I do understand a thing or two about software development. And I can tell you that

1) it takes enormous effort to fix bugs in a 3rd party software and is a big waste of resources compared to the vendor doing it. Backporting bugfixes may lead to side effects and require extensive testing. Why duplicate efforts? Why don't you just let that 3rd party figure it out? After all it is between Oracle and MySQL users.

2) it is _generally_ impossible to fix bugs without changing software behaviour and breaking compatibility, simply because many bugs define software behaviour and others may require fundamental architectural and/or protocol changes. So it is totally naive to hope to stay on ancient version, but keep it up to date at the same time. I really appreciate stability of CentOS as a development environment, but staying on the same MySQL version for 5 years is patently insane.

3) the whole goal is generally pointless - say, I'm running Ubuntu 10.10 LTS, it has MySQL 5.1.41. If Ubuntu backports ALL fixes to it, it would simply become 5.1.61. So why not just upgrade to 5.1.61 and be done with it?

Their hands are bound because
MySQL/Oracle somehow is not willing to provide important information
such as detailed changelogs or security information.

Making it nice and easy for linux distributions takes effort too. And that means resources. And who's paying for that? Apparently Oracle sees little value there, and I can see why: making sure that 5.1.41 gets all fixes for 5 years instead of just upgrading to a newer version - nobody wants that! What's the point of releasing 5.1.42, etc, then?

This leads us to the following options:
 * Stay with MySQL but no security nor bugfixes
 * Search for an alternative which is even 100% compatible with MySQL
+ having full community support

Or, stop playing security police and focus on what distributions are supposed to do in the first place: package whatever is released and make it easy for the user to install and use?

From my personal as well as my business perspective I want a system
where I can get bugfixes as well as security fixes. You should
consider those questions in your roadmap as well.

And that's why, as it goes now, I'll be using RPM-based Linux distribution to run MySQL because there I can at least rely on Oracle to do the job. And that's quite ironic as I develop on Ubuntu.


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Alexey Yurchenko,
Codership Oy, www.codership.com
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