Shuttleworth says Ubuntu is sticking with MySQL

Shuttleworth says Ubuntu is sticking with MySQL

Summary: Other Linux distributions are moving to MariaDB for their default database management system, but Ubuntu is standing by Oracle's MySQL. Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth explains why.


Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu and its parent company, Canonical, said on Google+ that Ubuntu 14.04 would include MySQL 5.6. I asked Shuttleworth why he wasn't using such MySQL forks as MariaDB. Shuttleworth answered, "We'll be happy to include solid code from MySQL forks as they mature. Percona, SkySQL, MariaDB are all interesting and would be nice to make easily available. "

oracle mysql
Rather than going with a MySQL fork, such as MariaDB, Ubuntu will continue to use MySQL as its default DBMS,

One major reason why Ubuntu is sticking with Oracle's MySQL is that Oracle made the effort to get MySQL 5.6 to work properly with Debian and Ubuntu. Yngve Svendsen, Oracle's Director of MySQL Engineering Services, apologized in a blog posting for Oracle's neglect of some Linux distributions in the past. Svendsen wrote, "We closed a gaping hole in our distribution on Linux."

The Norwegian-based developer explained, "When you’re upstream, you can easily lapse into a mode where you stop listening properly to those who sit downstream and have to process what you’re releasing."

By providing official MySQL repos Oracle has had a change in perspective that has, Svendsen continued, "made it easier for us to understand many of the important pain points of the distros. It quickly became clear to us that a good deal of those pain points could be fairly easily addressed, and in some of the more difficult cases, the folks involved in the repo project have acted as lobbyists internally in order to have Engineering priorities changed so we could fix some of the bigger things."

In particular, Svendsen said, "Over the last couple of weeks, we have seen our new experience and efforts bearing fruit in Debian and Ubuntu. Since late fall last year, release engineers and developers from the MySQL team have been working with the Debian and Ubuntu community to bring MySQL 5.6 into both distros." Moving forward "new MySQL maintenance releases should appear on a regular basis in Ubuntu."

So it is that MySQL 6.5 will be Ubuntu 14.04's default database management system (DBMS). Shuttleworth thinks Oracle has done great work with both maintaining MySQL and with integrating it with Debian and Ubuntu.

Other Linux distributors disagree about how well Oracle has done with MySQL. Red Hat, which has a long-standing conflict with Oracle about their Linux distributions, has decided to make MariaDB its default DBMS in its next major Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) release. SUSE is also expected to replace MySQL with MariaDB.

As for those who see Ubuntu only making this decision and other moves as an Ubuntu phobia about being like Red Hat, Shuttleworth said, "As for phobias, the real pitchforks have been those agitating against Oracle. I think Oracle have been an excellent steward of MySQL, with real investment and great quality. Appreciating and celebrating that doesn't detract from our willingness to engage elsewhere. I think the tendency to imagine conspiracies and malfeasance is one of the sadder aspects of OSS [open-source software] culture. Don't feed it."

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Topics: Enterprise Software, Data Management, Linux, Oracle, Ubuntu

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  • Civil war

    Linux was prospering when all the distro's were all trying to catch up to Microsoft. They were creating releases trying to match or better Windows features, after all Windows is always the benchmark to beat. ...but now, Linux is just a mess. Support is horrible. Features are haphazard with little consistency. And the distro's fight with one another. Sad.
    Sean Foley
    • Linux is just a mess. Support is horrible????

      What on earth are you talking about?

      As far as distros fighting with one another, I think what you are seeing is the flexibility of Linux and user preferences being expressed. There are different Linux distros for different users. You don't get that with Windows because the development is driven by one company, with little flexibility or expression.

      The days of saying that Linux is following Windows (features and usability) are long gone. In fact Microsoft has only recently implemented a software store that is (loosely) based on what began as Linspire's CRN software store. Microsoft even named theirs "Click to Run" and that is born from Linspire's Click 'N' Run warehouse that was launched in late 2001.

      "CNR (Click 'N' Run) was developed: based on Debian's Advanced Packaging Tool, it provides an easy-to-use graphical user interface and a slightly modified package system for an annual fee. The first public release of Lindows was version 1.0, released in late 2001"


      Linspire later open-source CNR and it is used in many of the modern Linux distros today and has been for many years now. I believe that is Microsoft Windows following Linux, not the other way around. This is just one example.

      Now MS seems top be getting into the Android phone market with (now being acquired) Nokia devices division.

      On that same mobile device market Microsoft's (former) CEO claimed that with Win * Microsoft had reach a true convergence or one OS across many devices, although that statement is far from true. The reality is MS is following Ubuntu on the convergence front, with Ubuntu on the final lap of the race and MS still in hanging around the starting gates.
      • You hit the nail on the head.

        The 'War' between various Linux people is no different than things that happen at companies like Apple and MS.
        The difference is that, with Linux, it all takes place in public forums with everyone encouraged to add their 2 cents.
        At Apple and MS, it happens in closed door boardrooms, where many people's interests are not represented.

        I prefer it being in the open, as I believe better decisions are made when everyone has a say.
        • Apples and Oranges

          Apple and Microsoft are two different companies with two entirely different operating systems. Why should they have conversations with each other?
          Sorry, not getting your point at all.
          • Linux OS development in public forums

            Just to clarify (not to agree),
            - anothercanuck didn't mean Apple & MS should discuss features with each other.
            - He meant they should discuss features with their users in public forum debates like Linux. Instead, Apple & MS implement features based on focus groups and their own perceptions of global user needs.
    • Have to agree

      All this fighting and differentials between linux distros is keeping people from ever touching it. Migrations would be a headache between them. I got a good laugh out of the horrible support comment because its true if you consider posting on a message board and waiting a week for an answer a type of support. Otherwise its pretty nonexistent.
      • Hi, Mr. Davidson :)

        Am hoping that you'll bring your act to the next LinuxCon. Am sure that you will bring the house down.
        Rabid Howler Monkey
      • FUD Alert

        Ahh the legendary LD. You ARE aware, are you not, that you can but commercial support for most any leading Linux distribution just like you can with Windoz? Just checking your general level of IT compentency there dude.
      • re: Have to agree

        > All this fighting

        What fighting? Oh it's Loverock. Nevermind. Still, you can't support what you said.
        none none
      • Ummm... NO!

        This fighting is actually giving it press. Good press, bad press, it doesn't matter, it's still in the news.

        The only complaining is about Cannonical/Ubuntu. Its sad, but users bought in to their "Humanity" slogan and got crapped on by a company only interested in making money, not listening to the community, and forging their own path the rest of the entire Linux world rejects. On top of that, its come to light that they weren't a good partner with Gnome, Debian, or the kernel, essentially being mostly a mooch. If you want to complain about it, complain to them. The rest of the Linux communtiy gets along fine. I don't see Fedora, Debian and Slackware at war. I don't see Mageia, Gentoo, and Arch complaining about each other.
    • By the same logic...

      ...we should ditch competitive elections de jure and just go with a one party state.

      After all, it's hard to get anything done when voters and politicians are constantly arguing with each other.
      John L. Ries
      • Actually, a "no party" state would be much preferable...

        but, this sub-thread is a tangent, and not about the topic of Ubuntu or Linux.

        You can all believe all you want that Linux and Ubuntu and all the other distros are doing just fine, but, reality on the ground still points to around 1% of Linux on PCs, which is a dismal record after so many years of trying.

        But, go ahead, and stay in denial, while Linux stays around the 1% mark too.
        • adornoe: "while Linux stays around the 1% mark"

          In case you failed to notice, this article is about Ubuntu, NoSQL and MariaDB. I'll spell it out for you:


          Only developers and geeks install MySQL or MariaDB on their Linux desktops. That's why Sun developed Base for OpenOffice and made OpenOffice available for the Linux desktop, so that ordinary users could have either a personal database or a front-end to enterprise databases.

          And the Linux server market share is at least as high as the Windows server market share.

          You're doubly off topic.

          P.S. I *knew* that when John L Ries wrote his bit about elections and politics that adornoe would "stop by". :)
          Rabid Howler Monkey
          • Well, Mr Monkey, I'm always ready to correct other people's mistakes...

            but, I'll correct mine in the last post before this one.

            Where I wrote: "this sub-thread is a tangent, and not about the topic of Ubuntu or Linux. "

            I meant to say: "this sub-thread is a tangent, and not about politics, but about the topic of Ubuntu or Linux. "

            Is that clearer to you now?

            I don't care what goes into Ubuntu or Linux or what DB is used.

            What I said is still true. Linux, no matter what the flavor, is still around 1% market share on PCs.

            Servers is another topic, and Linux fanatics never fail to mention that, Linux dominates in that area. That's not what my argument was/is about.

            However, I'm still correct that this topic is not about politics, and if somebody takes the opportunity to get political and I notice and have a gripe about it, then, I will be heard.
          • adornoe: "Linux fanatics never fail to mention that, Linux dominates

            in that area [servers]."

            I neither stated nor implied that Linux dominates in servers. Here's what I wrote:

            "And the Linux server market share is at least as high as the Windows server market share."

            As far as I can tell, both Windows and Linux are doing rather well in the server market. Thanks for pointing out that I am not a "Linux fanatic". :)
            Rabid Howler Monkey
        • I'll agree on the headline...

          ...though I suspect we disagree on the details; but as you've said yourself, sometimes we have to be practical.

          The optimal number of political parties is zero. The worst possible number is one.

          And market share is not a true measure of success in this case; viability and meeting expectations are. Desktop Linux is not in any danger of disappearing and has many satisfied users, myself included. That is enough.

          But I've long been amused by claims that a computing platform needs to be controlled by a single entity, or else chaos will ensue. I suspect that the real point is that there needs to be a single dominant computing platform controlled by a single vendor, or else chaos will ensue. Personally, I'm a bit more trusting of markets than that.
          John L. Ries
        • I guess the real point is...

          ...what we see in the Linux world is the natural result of a competitive market; just as political debate is a natural consequence of a free market in ideas. Both can be squelched by various means, but the cure is much worse than is the disease.

          In the case of Linux distros; different distributors will have different opinions and will make different decisions, and we get to see which ones work best. And it's in the interest of the different distributors to maintain a high degree of interoperability between Linux distros (much more so than we see among commercial UNIX flavors), so we see that too (making my job much easier than it would be otherwise).
          John L. Ries
        • re: Actually, a "no party" state would be much preferable...

          Then move to Somalia.
          none none
          • I don't think he meant it quite that way...

            ...but maybe he'll clarify.

            I was, of course, talking about *voluntarily* non-partisan politics; or more realistically, a situation where parties are mere advocacy organizations with no role in government (no caucuses, no patronage, officially non-partisan elections, etc).
            John L. Ries
          • none none: You must be the dumbest commenter on the internet,

            and one with very poor thinking skills.

            "No party" means having no allegiance to any political party; it doesn't mean the same as having no government or having a chaotic and ungoverned country.

            Somalia has a government, even if it's a joke.

            The U.S. doesn't need political parties, and people can still vote their way, by considering issues that matter to them, and then going with the candidate(s) that best represents their views. One party doesn't mean "devoid of differences".

            Perhaps it's you that needs to go to Somalia, or somewhere where people who don't use their heads won't be making fools of themselves, because, no one will care.