Looking for MySQL 4.1

I had need today to download a version of MySQL 4.1 to test something. The MySQL Developer Zone archives no longer provides any software before 5.0.

While this may have long reached EOL and is no longer support, customers still do run this version of MySQL.

Anybody that can help out with binaries (on several OS’s), it would be appreciated.

SPOF Internet

SPOF (i.e. Single Point of Failure) is the bane for technologists. Avoiding SPOF generally requires redundancy, and redundancy has a cost, often more then a business is prepared to pay. In the database field, I see this regularly and advise clients on how to improve availability and potential avoid disasters that can affect their business.

Today, at approximately 10:30am, the Con Edison work crew in front of my home (digging a 5″ deep trench down the road), severed multiple Time Warner Cable fibre connections. ($#&* and the lack of ownership to correct timely is another story). No Internet, no ability to work actively with clients (which I was doing), etc, etc.

As an individual that works from home, I have recognized this SPOF and have redundancy in place. That is, a Verizon MiFi HotSpot, normally used for travel, but a backup in times of Internet downtime to my home. The moral here is, one level of redundancy is often not enough, just as MySQL replication is not a backup solution, only one part thereof, my backup redundancy was in maintenance mode (in this case loaned to a good overseas friend that is visiting and traveling in the US). Disaster often strikes unexpectedly, and often causes multiple failures, this being an example of a cascading failure in my Internet redundancy procedures.

The fact that I am writing this post, shows that I have a second backup, that is a portable WiFi hotspot on my T-Mobile phone. It’s not great, but it is an emergency.

This is not a satisfactory solution long term. My first estimate for repairs was September 17th. Even after stressing that was unsatisfactory, my second estimate is still unacceptable for my business.

Amen, to co-working spaces in New York. The ability to work at a location for a fixed daily/weekly/monthly cost. It pays to know where they are, and have an informal relationship for such an emergency. While inconvenient, I can take a laptop and have power and Internet to work for some core hours in the day, again far less then ideal.

For those that have actually decided to read this far, the moral of the story is this. What is your plan when this happens to your business connection, or your primary MySQL database server? What is acceptable downtime, and how to address correcting issues outside of your control (e.g. An explosion in a data center taking out 15,000 servers, which has happened to me, or damage to the 5 servers you have, all in a single rack). With practically every client, there is not a defined plan in the event of a disaster. There should be.

MySQL client password security

In case you missed it, MySQL 5.6.6, also known as Milestone 9, was recently released. I have yet to install this, however just one part of the MySQL 5.6.6 Release Notes makes placing installing and testing high on my TODO list.

Updated 20 Sep, 2012. Be sure to also read Todd’s post Understanding mysql_config_editor’s security aspects about a more in-depth and accurate description of this new feature. In summary, “It makes secure access via MySQL client applications easier to use”.

That is the reported improvements in password management. From the release notes:

Security Improvements

These security improvements were implemented:

MySQL now provides a method for storing authentication credentials securely in an option file named .mylogin.cnf. To create the file, use the mysql_config_editor utility. The file can be read later by MySQL client programs to obtain authentication credentials for connecting to a MySQL server. mysql_config_editor writes the .mylogin.cnf file using encryption so the credentials are not stored as clear text, and its contents when decrypted by client programs are used only in memory. In this way, passwords can be stored in a file in non-cleartext format and used later without ever needing to be exposed on the command line or in an environment variable. This improves security for interactive use of MySQL client programs, as well as security for noninteractive tasks that require a MySQL password from a file. For more information, see Section 4.6.6, “mysql_config_editor — MySQL Configuration Utility”.

The .mylogin.cnf file can contain multiple sets of options, known as “login paths.” To specify which option group to use from the .mylogin.cnf file for connecting to the server, use the –login-path option. See Section, “Command-Line Options that Affect Option-File Handling”.

There are additional improvements and modifications around encryption. Well worth reading about in MySQL 5.6.6 Release Notes.

When is a crashing MySQL bug not a bug?

Answer: When Oracle acknowledges the bug in 5.5.25 (to the owner only), corrects the bug in 5.5.27 (to the owner only), yet hides all information of its existence.

Recently a colleague and good friend discovered a bug in MySQL 5.5 replication that would crash MySQL. This was initially reported as Bug #65740, and after a lot of back and forth, a reproducible test case was found. Excellent work on the part of my colleague to spend the time to clearly identify the specific conditions. I remember looking at this initial thread in detail for an UPDATE statement using variables combined with an –ignore-database configuration option.

For no explanation by Oracle, this bug was subsequently marked as private (after I originally viewed the thread publicly), corrected, and the corrected bug is not referenced in the 5.5.27 Release Notes, yet the private bug clearly states.

[20 Jul 11:59] XXXX
Fixed in 5.1.65/5.5.27.

The reason why I raise this concern is due to the lack of consistency. Why this was not included in the Release Notes is not acceptable in my view. However, the installation of 5.2.25 was needed to address another obscure Bug #45670 that was corrected and remains open to the MySQL Community.

I do not know of [yet] a public statement by Oracle that details why certain information about MySQL is open, and certain information is closed.