Foreign keys / Transactions in MySQL.. WTF?

Nic Gibson nicg at
Tue Jul 31 12:43:40 BST 2007

On 31/07/07, Aaron Trevena <aaron.trevena at> wrote:
> On 31/07/07, ti at <ti at> wrote:
> > > How did MySQL get so popular when it still seems to be missing key
> > > features?
> > >
> > > tjc
> >
> > Do things like "command-line SQL tool with history that understands your
> > terminal width", "GUI tool that starts in less than tree minutes",
> > "reliable export/import tool", and "readily configured full text search"
> > count as "key features"?
> Also
> - built in replication and transaction logging.

What do you mean by transaction logging? Any relational DB has transaction logs.

OK, I can't really disagree about the replication although I'm forced
to wonder exactly how reliable it will be given that replication
really should have a solid model for relational integrity underlying

> - doesn't need to vacuum tables regularly, killing performance.

I find that autovacuum is *nearly* good enough and vacuum can be scheduled.
Oh, and I don't see anything better on reclaiming 'old' space in mysql.

> - easy and clear authentication and authorisation (done and
> documented) in one place.

Hmm. We've agreed to disagree on the steaming pile of cack that mysql
calls authentication before, haven't we? GRANT/REVOKE work pretty well
the same on every other engine. Network level access is and should be
a different thing (imho).

> - DWIMery instead of pedantry.
> I've used Oracle, Postgres, SQL Server and MySQL, and still find it
> quicker and easier to  use MySQL, and still haven't been bitten by it
> in more than 8 years.

Hmmm. Let me think. Yup. I've been using mysql on and off since early
98. I've always expected it to act like a database and I've always
been bitten when it doesn't.

> It's not *that* bad, just accept it for what it is, a slightly quirky
> and overfriendly lightweight rdbms-type-thing.

Now we're close to agreement. If what you want is a fast storage
mechanism with an SQL-ish model for accessing that data then mysql
isn't a terrible choice.

However, MySQL AB keep trying to sell it as an enterprise level RDMS
and it ain't.

Nic Gibson
Director, Corbas Consulting Ltd
Editorial and Technical Consultancy

More information about the mailing list