October 24, 2014

Growth of Percona software releases

It was once said that “real artists ship.” In looking over the history of Percona software releases, we are currently shipping more software than ever before.

First, let’s look at Percona Server. Let’s look at all major versions: 5.1, 5.5 and 5.6 as well as the total for each year. The estimate for 2013 comes from assuming the second half of 2013 is similar to the first half.

Percona Server releases per year

In 2011, when Percona Server 5.5 came along, we see a sharp reduction in Percona Server 5.1 releases (remember that there’s at least one Percona Server 5.1 release for each Oracle MySQL 5.1 release, and this reduction is likely a reflection of the reduction of releases from Oracle). In 2011, 2012 and 2013 we see a pretty steady number of Percona Server 5.1 releases. It seems that 5.1 is not going anywhere yet.

For Percona Server 5.5, we see an increase in 2012, which likely mirrors an increased interest in Percona Server 5.5 in production environments with added feature and bug fix releases.

For Percona XtraBackup, we have a similar story of an increase in the number of releases we’ve been making.

Percona XtraBackup releases per year

You can clearly see the switch between stable versions of 1.6.x to 2.0.x and now with 2.1.x. There has been a new major version of Percona XtraBackup each year since 2010 and for 1.6 and above, there have been maintenance releases into the following year.

It’s also clear that we’ve dramatically increased the number of Percona XtraBackup releases each year. This allows earlier access to new features (in alpha and beta releases) and earlier access to bug fixes (point releases such as 2.1.4).

If we look across the entire Percona software range, there is a quite noticeable increase in the number of releases year-on-year. This graph is again only up to July 23rd, so the 2013-estimate is based on average releases per month.

Percona Software releases per year

It’s quite amazing to see the increase from 2011, where we shipped 24 releases, to 2012 where we shipped 56 (more than one a week) to this year where we’ve already shipped 38 and we could ship 64.

This growth trend isn’t possible without both growing the development team and continually improving development practices, process and organization. Over the past two years we’ve made many changes to how we develop and release software. We’ve automated nearly everything (and this will be a topic for a future post) and distributed the workload of things that cannot be automated without major advancements in AI.

Personally, I’m really quite amazed when faced with the hard numbers. I’m also incredibly proud of everyone involved in making every release happen.

About Stewart Smith

Stewart Smith has a deep background in database internals including MySQL, MySQL Cluster, Drizzle, InnoDB and HailDB. he is also one of the founding core developers of the Drizzle database server. He served at Percona from 2011-2014. He is a former Percona employee.

Comments

  1. I would love to know more about this software.

  2. Hi Stewart, Do you have any tutorials on how to use Percona? I haven’t been able to come across many.

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