Previous month:
October 2006
Next month:
December 2006

Alfresco, MySQL, Red Hat Benchmarks


Alfresco has published the results of their enterprise content management benchmark using MySQL 5.0 running on 64-bit Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). The benchmark uses a 10 million document repository across 10,000 folders and Alfresco was able to demonstrate linear scalability in a real-world scenario. The benchmark demonstrates online performance of batch load with mixed concurrent read and write operations under different user loads with different machine configurations.  The benchmark was validated by Optaros, a consulting firm that specializes in open source project implementations.

Alfresco's design has been implemented in a modular, de-centralized fashion in order to enable highly efficient scale-out and the benchmarks showcase the efficiencies they have achieved.  More details are available from Alfresco in their white paper

Nokia Foundation Award


MySQL CEO Mårten Mickos received a Nokia Foundation Award for his leadership in advancing open source technology.  The Nokia Foundation was formed in 1995 in Finland to support the scientific development of information and telecommunications technologies. Previous recipients of the annual award include Linus Torvalds, and professor Moncef Gabbouj from the Tampere Uninversity of Technology in Finland.

The telecommunications industry in general and Nokia in particular, have been huge beneficiaries of open source technology, with extensive use of Linux and the MySQL to power business-critical systems. Nokia is also using Linux to expand their presence into handheld devices such as the popular Nokia 770 Internet Tablet. 

Integrated SugarCRM, MySQL Stack


SugarCRM has announced an integrated stack offering that enables customers to get a one-stop-shopping solution.  The Sugar FastStack installs SugarCRM, Apache, MySQL and PHP on Windows, Linux or Mac platforms.  Faster to install, faster to get results.  It's a no brainer.

MySQL Camp Redux


We held the first ever MySQL Camp "un-conference" last week and it turned out to be a great success.  Kudos to Jay Pipes from our Community team for putting together this great event. There were over 200 registered attendees contributing ideas, sharing best practices techniques and generally geeking out on MySQL.  It was great to have attendees from some of the heavy-duty MySQL users like FaceBook, Google, Yahoo, YouTube, Flickr, SixApart, AdBrite and many others mixing in with key developers, consultants and SEs from MySQL.  We also had a few of our partners there including Hyperic, Proven Scaling, Solid, Zmanda, Zimbra and even Ken Jacobs ("Dr DBA") from Oracle.


There was quite a funny moment during the introductions on the first day when someone from the audience asked Ken "Do you work for InnoDB?" and Ken responded back "No, InnoDB works for me!" While Ken dodged questions about Oracle's plans to fork Red Hat Linux and even their reasons for acquiring InnoDB, he did ask people to judge Oracle by their actions and not get into speculation on their motives.  Since Oracle's a publicly held company, he said he's constrained about what he can and can't say, so he didn't really say much at all on those topics.  But he did say "Oracle would never do anything to harm MySQL and in fact we couldn't even if we wanted to."  Oracle has done a good job working closely with MySQL and they have made good on their promise to continue to fix bugs in InnoDB that will ensure more scalability for our users. And earlier this year Oracle renewed the agreement with MySQL to continue to provide InnoDB thereby cementing the relationship for many years.  And as Ken pointed out: "Oracle was MySQL partner of the year this year and we hope we can earn that again next year."  As Heiki Turri, who works for Ken, has said, it us "business as usual" with Oracle managing InnoDB.


If you missed out on MySQL Camp, you can find some of the highlights from the links below.  And I'm sure Jay will do his best to get some of these great sessions on our official agenda at the MySQL Conference in April.

New MySQL Storage Engines


Back at our users conference in April we announced our pluggable storage engine program encouraging developers to extend MySQL with new innovative engines.  Not only have we expanded our internal development with engines like Falcon, Cluster and others, but we're seeing significant new developments from the MySQL ecosystem.  The pluggable storage engine architecture enables us to work with partners and with the community to reach a much broader range of needs with MySQL than we could on our own. 

There are two new storage engines coming out of stealth mode.  Both help strengthen MySQL in the rapidly growing Data Warehousing market, coming at it from different directions and solving very different problems.  NitroEDB comes from NitroSecurity and provides a high performance embedded database for dealing with very large data sets 50x or even 100x faster than traditional closed source solutions.  NitroSecurity has years of experience in high-volume VLDB systems coming from their work in realtime security management solutions and intrusion prevention systems.  Now they've taken that unique technology and are combining it with MySQL to provide high-performance solutions for data warehousing and other markets.

InfoBright has announced their BrightHouse storage engine for MySQL which solves a different type of problem in data warehousing, namely, how do you cost-effectively archive huge multi-terabyte data warehouses.  Brighthouse is able to compress databases by a factor of 10x (and sometimes up to 30x) thereby reducing storage costs up to 90%.  InfoBright also offers a range of tools to help manage the archiving process, making it easy for DBAs to take advtange of the benefits of archive compression.

I'm personally very excited to see these two new engines.  It shows that the storage engine architecture can accomodate a broad range of needs, some that go way beyond what we've focused on internally at MySQL.  Judging by all the activity, I think there will be a lot of exciting new storage engine technology at the MySQL Conference in April.

Zimbra Front Page News in WSJ


Zimbra hit the front page of the Wall Street Journal on Monday.  Normally a CEO doesn't make front page of the Journal until he does an IPO or goes to prison. Satish, well done!  This is even better than Scott's bobblehead doll

I've been a big fan of Zimbra for a long time.  They've continued to invest in building out a great product line with the Zimbra Collaboration Suite (ZCS) a highly scalable open source email and calendaring suite that now has more than 4 million mailboxes under subscription with customers like H&R Block, Raytheon, ZipRealty, Interim Healthcare and others.

Zimbra's story in the Journal may not be news to longtime open source fans, but to me it's a sign of how mainstream open source has become.  Zimbra is a good example of a disruptive software company that delivers better bang for the buck than the closed source incumbents by using open source as part of their strategy.  Microsoft's Exchange is a decent product, but it's a tarpit.  Once you start with Exchange, you're stuck with it, stuck on Windows and pretty much stuck with Outlook.  Zimbra gives users an alternative that is not only better, it's cross-platform, it supports a broader range of clients, it has a great Ajax Web 2.0 user interface, it's got better scalability and it's cheaper.  Also, it's based on MySQL.  What's not to love?

Sun to GPL Java


Sun has announced today that the Java programming language and runtime environment will be open sourced under the GPL license, the license also used by Linux, MySQL and roughly 70% of all open source projects tracked at 

While Sun's Jonathan Schwartz had previously criticized the GPL license, there's clearly a change of heart here, due to the huge popularity of Linux.  By following the GPL license, Java can now be more readily distributed with Linux. Sun will follow a dual license policy, much like MySQL, enabling Java to be licensed under either GPL 2 or Sun's own commercial license which provides legal indemnification.

Kudos to Jonathan and the team at Sun on making good on its promise to open source Java.  (This news originally broke in a story by Barb Darrow at CRN.)   

Update: I have updated this story to include the Sun press release, some blogs from Sun that are mostly fluff and additional news links. 

How Much Is Too Much XS?


I was over at the O'Reilly Web 2.0 conference and ended up in the "overflow" room.  At most conferences, the overflow room is like a dungeon for late comers.  At Web 2.0, they made this into a premium suite; it was sponsored by Google and there were comfy chairs, padded cubes to sit on, plenty of snack food and fridges stocked with your choice from dozens of caffeinated or healthy beverages.  Frankly, it was more comfortable in the overflow room than in the main conference area.  I happened to try a sugar-free energy drink called XS, from Quixtar (the Amway guys).  I'm not enough of a conoisseur to tell the difference between Red Bull and RockStar so I would put it in the same category. Each can packs 83 mg of caffeine which is less than a cup of joe, and about twice what you'd find in a can of diet coke.

If you're heading over to the MySQL Camp you at Google Friday or on the weekend, you might want to try one out.  But don't blame me if you get the shakes.  BTW, MySQLCamp is shaping up nicely with around 150 participants so far.  You need to register in advance and remember, this is a hands-on, participative event.  It looks like it should be fun and there will be quite a few hardcore MySQLers there including Brian Aker, Monty, David, Kaj Arno, Jay Pipes and others.  There's also some heavy hitters from Yahoo, Google, Zmanda, Hyperic, Zend, Solid, SixApart, Digg, FaceBook, Flickr, YouTube, Facebook and others. Kaj promises to take photos, so it should be fun.

Web 2.0 & MySQL Camp


There are two excellent conferences going on this week, O'Reilly's Web 2.0 Conference November 7-9 in San Francisco and the MySQL Camp November 10-12 in Mountain View.  To be fair, I should say that MySQL Camp is really an "un-conference".  It's more of a participative event for hardcore MySQL users and developers than a traditional go-listen-to-someone-speak-and-drink-coffee-to-stay-awake type of conference.  So maybe that's the distinction: if you want to listen, go to Web 2.0, if you want to drive the discussion, go to MySQL Camp.  And there's no reason you can't go to both.  Different strokes for different folks.

  • Web 2.0 Conference: Nov 7-9, Palace Hotel, San Francisco
  • MySQL Camp: Nov 10-12, Google HQ, Mountain View

Oracle Forks with Linux


Since Oracle announced their fork of Red Hat Linux most of the news coverage has been about the business implications for Red Hat and other Linux vendors.  To be honest, I don't think the impact is all that significant.  Decisions are made by one guy at Oracle (much to the chagrin of many of his executives) and if Larry decides he wants to fork with Red Hat, then he tells his guys to get it done.  So what do they do?  They post CentOS for download on the Oracle web site and call it their own.  And as part of that, Oracle is now distributing MySQL, which is ironic, but nonetheless appreciated. 

Maybe Oracle customers think that Oracle can do a better job supporting their OS than the guys who wrote it, or maybe they think Larry Ellison needs a bigger boat.  But we'll see in six or twelve months whether Oracle Linux has any significant market share outside of Redwood Shores.  (I believe Oracle runs Red Hat internally, so it will be interesting to see if they switch their internal operations.)

Early reports indicate Oracle's promised compatibility with Red Hat is at least questionable.  A blog posting called Uncompatible Linux shows a number of issues.  Some items are no doubt just minor slip ups perhaps because of the rush job in making the announcement, while other problems could be more serious. At any rate, it's not confidence inspiring. At the very least, you'd want to wait until Oracle works out some of the kinks.  And in the meantime, Red Hat, Novell and Ubuntu are not standing still.