Tag Archives: MySQL

Nobody loves Oracle

Poor Oracle. Poor Larry Ellison. Their yacht is about to lose the America’s Cup and last week Google added insult to injury.

MySQL vs MariaDB logosThe Register reported that Google intends to migrate all of its products that use MySQL, which is owned by Oracle, to MariaDB. This probably involves thousands of servers. Wikipedia has already replaced MySQL with MariaDB.

What is MariaDB?
When Oracle bought Sun Microsystems in 2010, it acquired the popular open source OpenOffice and MySQL products. Soon some OpenOffice developers split and created LibreOffice, which is built on the same code, but is not controlled by Oracle.

Then Monty Widenius, a key creator of MySQL, and other MySQL developers left and created MariaDB, which is built on the open source MySQL code. MariaDB (https://mariadb.org) is not controlled by Oracle, either. (The name? Monty’s daughter is named Maria.)


There’s no love lost between Oracle and Google. Oracle would dearly love to provide the database for Google’s search engine, but Google instead built its own database, called BigTable. As far as I know, Google buys nothing from Oracle other than (maybe) support for MySQL.

Over the past few years Oracle has claimed in federal court that Google’s Android operating system contains code stolen from its Java compiler. (Java was created by Sun and its compiler is now owned by Oracle.) Google has won that copyright infringement lawsuit, but Oracle is appealing the decision.

Did the friction between Oracle and Google influence Google’s decision to abandon Oracle’s MySQL? What do you think?

Extra credit questions: Does Oracle care? Why?

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© Russ Bellew · Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA · phone 954 873-4695

What’s the future for OpenOffice and MySQL?


On April 20, Sun Microsystems agreed to be purchased by Oracle (http://www.sun.com/third-party/global/oracle/).

Oracle is the leader in heavy-duty relational database systems. Sun Microsystems has overseen two popular software products: OpenOffice (an excellent free alternative to Microsoft Office); and MySQL, a relational database with over 6 million installations. Both OpenOffice and MySQL are open source products, meaning that for all practical purposes they are available to users at no cost. In practice, most organizations either purchase support contracts or hire IT staff to provide support. MySQL has won wide acceptance since its creation in 1996. Heavy-hitters Flickr, Facebook, Wikipedia, Google, Nokia, and YouTube are built upon MySQL database engines.


Wither MySQL?
MySQL has steadily grown into a heavy-duty product that poses a potential threat to Oracle. The TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) of MySQL is about one-sixteenth of the TCO for Oracle: http://www.mysql.com/tcosavings/  I had feared that Oracle, if allowed by the US Department of Justice to control MySQL, would find a way to kill MySQL.

One of the creators of MySQL, a Finnish programmer named Ulf Michael Widenius (nickname Monty), recently left Sun Microsystems and formed a company called Monty Program AB (http://askmonty.org/). Read Monty’s blog: http://monty-says.blogspot.com/  Monty has also recently formed the Open Database Alliance http://opendatabasealliance.com/

It appears that Monty’s moves — effectively forking the development of MySQL — will pull the rug out from under Oracle’s purchase of MySQL, should the DOJ approve the acquisition of MySQL by Oracle.


Wither OpenOffice?
Release 3.1 of OpenOffice was just published a few weeks ago. I hope that its development continues. There’s no love lost between Oracle’s chairman Larry Ellison and Microsoft’s chairman Bill Gates, so my hope is that Mr. Ellison will provide the resources necessary to keep OpenOffice a strong competitor to Microsoft Office.

Both futures look good
The conclusion? If we’re lucky, both OpenOffice and MySQL will continue to thrive, despite Oracle’s purchase of Sun Microsystems.

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