After a long time (with the first RC-5.1.22 released more than a year ago, and the first public version back in 2005), mysql version 5.1 was finally declared ready for production use, and 5.1.30-GA is available for download.
MySQL 5.1 provides a number of new enhancements including:
- Better performance with partitioning
- Easy manageability with the event scheduler
- Improved Plugin interface
- Logs on demand
- More reliability with row-based replication.
- The embedded server, which was not maintained during MySQL 5.0, is back in service!
Why didn’t mysql label this as version 6? By all means this brings several major changes and it would have been more than normal to reflect this in the version number; personally I don’t care about this, but there are several clients that I’ve worked with (normally big companies) that will not consider upgrading to a newer version until this gets a minor upgrade (like they will wait for 6.1 after 6.0 was released). I guess this comes from windows experiences where many people wait for the first SP to be released to consider it stable ;-) . Anyway this has nothing to do with the quality of the release. What is important to point out is as we can understand from Monty’s post about this, the release was not at all bound to users or developers needs, and scheduled by management plans that just wanted to get this version released by the end of the year, even if they knew that it has many serious bugs but they just wanted more people to run this version and test it :-( .
Anyone looking to upgrade to mysql5.1 should evaluate this very careful and after reading Monty’s post and the list of mysql open bugs understand what are the problems they can expect. I know many people and companies are running mysql5.1 already and for them this is a good news as hopefully now the outstanding bugs will be finally looked at and fixed, but for the large population it will take sometime until they will have this installed by default on various linux distributions (for example lenny that is the next stable debian release will include mysql5.0, meaning only the future stable version - about 1-2 years from now - will include 5.1). Mysql has done many mistakes lately, starting with the way they are seeing the community implication in the project and continuing with the way they managed the releases of mysql5.1, but given its huge popularity it is still the first choice for most developers and startups. It is not too late and hopefully Sun management can help out with this, to return to its roots and become a real open source project where the community and users of mysql are listened and treated accordingly. The power of software is in its users and not the other way!
ps. I had a feeling mysql will push this release until the end of the year, and had a discussion a few months ago with a friend of mine that was sure they will not do this until all major bugs were fixed. I guess I was right, Bhushan, but I am sure you are happy about this and we will start using this version asap :-) .