In December, 2010 Oracle has made MySQL 5.5, the latest version of MySQL to its users. This announcement showed the continuing interest and commitment of Oracle to develop and deliver new advancements in the field to MySQL users. The new version of MySQL has lot of new features delivering notable enhancements to performance and scalability of web applications across several popular operating systems like Windows, Oracle, Linux, Unix, and Mac OS X. Some of the key features and benefits of MySQL 5.5 are
As many computers are now running on multi-CPU and multi-core hardware and operating systems, MySQL Database and InnoDB storage engine have been upgraded in the new version to deliver optimum performance and scalability. Enhanced diagnostics, better index and table partitioning, and signal/resignal support improve the handling of MySQL 5.5. For companies which use Windows platform, Oracle has included several Windows-specific features like network support for auto-detecting the MAC address, capacity to build engines and other plugins as DLLs, simplification of threading code, etc.
Delivers Significant Performance Gains
When compared with MySQL 5.1, the latest version delivers significant performance improvements. In the Windows environment it delivers 1,500 percent performance improvement in read/write operations and 500 percent for read only operations. While in the case of Linux, the performance improvements have gone up to 360 percent for read/write operations and 200 percent in the case of read only operations.
Better Instrumentation and Diagnostics
Even though the performance schema has been part of MySQL for sometime now, it has not been instrumented for Performance Schema monitoring till now. MySQL’s InnoDB 1.1 is now enabled with performance monitoring for the first time. The performance schema monitoring statistics are available for specific mutexes of InnoDB, rw-locks, threads, and Input/Output operations. The data in MySQL 5.5 is very well structured so that everything is visible to the user. Users also have the option to filter the data so that they can only see the InnoDB items.
In the previous versions of MySQL, only one mutex protected several memory areas attached to the undo and logging information. In the latest version, the single mutex (log-sys) was splitted to create a separate log_flush_order mutexs for individual memory areas so that the internal processing can happen without making other operations involving the buffer pool to wait longer. The improved Log Sys Mutex also ensures that other operations are less blocked during internal processing.
Native Asynchronous I/O for Linux
This new feature on MySQL 5.5 enables good concurrency of Input/Output requests on Linux systems. The new version of MySQL has asynchronous I/O where an I/O request can be given immediately and the thread which is servicing the query need not need to wait till the I/O operation is finished. This feature enables the faster execution of I/O requests. Asynchronous I/O was supported only for the Windows in the previous versions of MySQL. Users need to install the libaio user space library on Linux to take advantage of this feature.
The community edition of MySQL 5.5 which is licensed under the GNU General Public License is now available for free download from the company’s website.
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