October 24, 2014

The ARCHIVE Storage Engine – does it do what you expect?

Sometimes there is a need for keeping large amounts of old, rarely used data without investing too much on expensive storage. Very often such data doesn’t need to be updated anymore, or the intent is to leave it untouched. I sometimes wonder what I should really suggest to our Support customers. For this purpose, the […]

Want to archive tables? Use Percona Toolkit’s pt-archiver

Percona Toolkit’s pt-archiver is one of the best utilities to archive the records from large tables to another tables or files. One interesting thing is that pt-archiver is a read-write tool. It deletes data from the source by default, so after archiving you don’t need to delete it separately. As it is done by default, you […]

Implementing SchemaSpy in your MySQL environment

Lately I have been working with a set of customers on a longer term basis which has given me time to explore new tools using their environments.  One tool that I am finding very helpful is called SchemaSpy. SchemaSpy is a Java-based tool (requires Java 5 or higher) that analyzes the metadata of a schema in […]

Quickly finding unused indexes (and estimating their size)

I had a customer recently who needed to reduce their database size on disk quickly without a lot of messy schema redesign and application recoding.  They didn’t want to drop any actual data, and their index usage was fairly high, so we decided to look for unused indexes that could be removed. Collecting data It’s […]

Why don’t our new Nagios plugins use caching?

In response to the release of our new MySQL monitoring plugins on Friday, one commenter asked why the new Nagios plugins don’t use caching. It’s worth answering in a post rather than a comment, because there is an important principle that needs to be understood to monitor servers correctly. But first, some history. When I […]

Side load may massively impact your MySQL Performance

When we’re looking at benchmarks we typically run some stable workload and we run it in isolation – nothing else is happening on the system. This is not however how things happen in real world when we have significant variance in the load and many things can be happening concurrently. It is very typical to […]

EXPLAIN EXTENDED can tell you all kinds of interesting things

While many people are familiar with the MySQL EXPLAIN command, fewer people are familiar with “extended explain” which was added in MySQL 4.1 EXPLAIN EXTENDED can show you what the MySQL optimizer does to your query. You might not know this, but MySQL can dramatically change your query before it actually executes it. This process […]

When should you store serialized objects in the database?

A while back Friendfeed posted a blog post explaining how they changed from storing data in MySQL columns to serializing data and just storing it inside TEXT/BLOB columns. It seems that since then, the technique has gotten more popular with Ruby gems now around to do this for you automatically.

How many partitions can you have ?

I had an interesting case recently. The customer dealing with large MySQL data warehouse had the table which was had data merged into it with INSERT ON DUPLICATE KEY UPDATE statements. The performance was extremely slow. I turned out it is caused by hundreds of daily partitions created for this table. What is the most […]

How (not) to find unused indexes

I’ve seen a few people link to an INFORMATION_SCHEMA query to be able to find any indexes that have low cardinality, in an effort to find out what indexes should be removed.  This method is flawed – here’s the first reason why:

The cardinality of status index is woeful, but provided that the application […]