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Sun Adds Query Analyzer to MySQL Subscription

Sun Microsystems threw more chips into its "billion-dollar bet on the LAMP stack" with the recent launch of its MySQL Enterprise Fall 2008 release. The newest version of the Santa Clara, Calif.-based systems company's subscription-based service for the open source MySQL database comes with a neat piece of time-and-effort saving technology: the Query Analyzer, a much-requested tool for monitoring query performance.

The Query Analyzer was added to sooth a pain point developers and DBAs using MySQL had been calling to Sun's attention for quite a while, said Sun senior product manager Rob Young: The world's most popular open-source database is a black box when it comes to performance metrics.

"They just wanted to be able to monitor the SQL code running on their MySQL servers," Young told ADT. "They've all been bitten by bad queries that they've implemented into production, which they never would have implemented had they just seen them while in development or QA. This tool allows [MySQL Enterprise] subscribers to identify their most expensive SQL code, both in the development and QA cycle -- but also in the production environment -- and to monitor and analyze its performance."

Young said that the Analyzer has turned into something of a breakthrough feature in the MySQL world. Most DBAs and developers use the MySQL slow query log and some other provided utilities to find the atomic executions of queries and diagnose problems on essentially a single-query basis, he explained. The Query Analyzer collects data in an aggregated fashion, which frees them from the need to parse and compile to get the total execution expense of atomic queries. Instead, they get a graphical presentation that Sun said makes it possible for them to find their most expensive queries in minutes, instead of hours or days.

In short, the Analyzer allows users to find and fix problem queries in almost real-time across all servers.

Sun announced the new product at its annual MySQL Customer Conference in Paris. Sun paid about $1 billion to acquire the company behind MySQL about a year ago, prompting former MySQL CEO Marten Mickos, now senior vice president in Sun's Database Group, to characterize the deal as a "billion-dollar bet."

The MySQL Query Analyzer tool is integrated in the MySQL Enterprise Monitor (which characterizes as a "virtual DBA assistant") and provides users with an aggregated view into query execution counts at runtime, with no dependence on MySQL logs or the "show processlist" command. It provides sortable views based on all monitored statistics, searchable and sortable queries based on query type, "drill-downs" into sampled query execution statistics, and other features.

"Not only does this tool show you ugly queries that are taking a lot of time on their own, but also highly tuned queries that are being executed in error," Young said.

Sun is offering a free, 30-day trial subscription to the service here.

About the Author

John K. Waters is a freelance writer based in Silicon Valley. He can be reached at john@watersworks.com.

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