10 years of MySQL User Conferences

In preparing for this month’s Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo, I’ve been reminiscing about the annual MySQL User Conference’s history – the 9 times it previously took place in its various reincarnations – and there are a lot of good things, fun things to remember.

2003 MySQL Users Conference and Expo2003 was the year that marked the first MySQL user conference independently organized by MySQL AB. It was called the “MySQL Users Conference” and took place at the Double Tree hotel near the San Jose airport with an estimated 500-600 people attending. Monty and David kicked-off the show with keynotes and I recall one of them saying something like, “12 full-time engineers are working on MySQL server.” The MySQL Certification program was announced. MySQL 4.0.12 was just released as its first GA release in the MySQL 4.0 series, and for the first and only time in a MySQL version you could buy MySQL in a box with a CD inside, the same way you’d have bought any other software at the time. MySQL 4.1.0 was also available as an early alpha.

2004 MySQL User Conference2004 was the second year the event was independently organized by MySQL AB. It took place in Orlando, Florida at the Peabody hotel. It was a fun place to visit though it attracted a smaller crowd and this is why I think the conference never left California again afterward. Partnership with SAP was hot at this event and MaxDB database looked like it had a solid future. MySQL Cluster and MySQL Press were announced during this event; “High Performance MySQL” 1st edition written by Jeremy and Derek was also available. MySQL 4.0.18 was GA and 4.1.1 as alpha – perhaps the smallest-ever change in MySQL versions for the year.

2005 MySQL Conference and Expo2005 was the first year O’Reilly partnered with MySQL to put on an amazing conference with O’Reilly’s style of mixing fun with business. The conference name changes to “MySQL Conference and Expo” that year and moves to its current location at the convention center in Santa Clara, California. MySQL celebrated its 10th birthday at the conference. Some 1,300 reported to have attended. This is perhaps the time of the brightest hopes for MySQL to date at the time, and everyone had a “lets change the world” mentality. MySQL 4.1.11 was available as GA at the time on the conference and a lot of hopes were pinned on MySQL 5.0, which was supposed to target the enterprise customer, and which was available as non-GA 5.0.4 version at the time of event.

2006 MySQL User Conference2006 was the last year that I was attending the conference as a MySQL employee. I would attend all others, too, but now as part of Percona. It was the conference following the first shock to the MySQL Ecosystem – Oracle acquired Innodb in October of 2005. It was not very clear what that would mean for the MySQL ecosystem. A lot of focus was placed on the storage engine API diminishing importance of the Innodb storage engine. The Falcon storage engine was announced as a potential Innodb successor. A “MySQL Network” commercial subscription product was announced in what later evolved into “MySQL Enterprise,” and MySQL 5.0 is finally available as GA with version 5.0.20a… MySQL 5.1 is in development (5.1.9)

2007 MySQL User Conference2007 is the year when the “State of the Dolphin” previously delivered by Monty and David is gone, signaling some early tensions… the State of MySQL AB is delivered by Marten Mickos. It is truly a year of storage engines, focused on showing what is on top is what really matters. Falcon, SolidDB, NitroSecurity, PBXT, StorageEngine for S3 and IBM DB2 integration were all present at this show. Marten reports revenues of almost $50 million in 2006, preparing for an IPO, and MySQL 6.0 was to ship the next year. MySQL releases are split between the MySQL Community, and MySQL Enterprise is released with different versions on different schedules. MySQL 5.0.37 GA and 5.1.17 nonGA were the latest version at the conference.

2008 MySQL User Conference2008 Here comes the second shock to the MySQL ecosystem: No IPO. MySQL is now owned by Sun Microsystems. Monty goes public with his critique of MySQL Management. Monty is working on the Maria storage engine to replace Innodb for a number of use cases. The first “open core” plans are announced for MySQL Server – the online backup in MySQL 6.0, it’s to ship in commercial version only. An Innodb Plugin is announced and will be separate from MySQL Server, providing a more scalable Innodb version with more features. Gearman and MemcacheD storage engine plugins are available for MySQL. Facebook mentions they have over 1,800 MySQL Servers. MySQL Enterprise provides Monthly Rapid Updates [MRU] while Community MySQL versions updated every quarter or so. MySQL 5.0.51a is GA and 5.1.24 is nonGA

2009 MySQL User Conference2009 The first and the only conference organized by Sun and O’Reilly from the ground up. The third shock comes to the MySQL ecosystem when Oracle announces the purchase of Sun during the conference. Both Monty and Marten are no longer with the company (having left in February), and the State of the Dolphin talk is back but now delivered by Karen Padir, the new manager responsible for MySQL business at Sun. A lot of Sun hardware and Solaris focused talks this year. It is the first year that the Drizzle project participates in the conference. Percona runs Percona Performance Conference as a free event going concurrently with the conference and announced Percona XtraDB as improved and extended Innodb Plugin version, MySQL 5.1 is FA with 5.1.34 and MySQL 5.4.0 is in a nonGA version. The MySQL Enterprise model is changed… now MySQL Community versions are released monthly and Enterprise versions come in form of Quarterly Service Packs [QSP]

2010 MySQL User Conference2010 The deal between Oracle and Sun is now closed after overcoming a number of bottlenecks, including strong opposition by Monty. There is a lot of FUD and Drama over the conference, with the conference’s future itself now uncertain. The State of the Dolphin is now delivered by Edward Screven, the new boss of the MySQL business, now at Oracle. Monty changes his focus from Maria (storage engine) to MariaDB (complete MySQL replacement). There is a lot of “MySQL Community” focused keynotes. Good coverage of MySQL Alternatives including keynotes for Drizzle and MariaDB. MySQL 5.5 replaced MySQL 5.4 as next planned GA release. Percona releases GA version of Percona Xtrabackup – open source alternative to Innodb Hot backup. MySQL 5.1.46 is GA and MySQL 5.5.4 is not GA at the time of the conference.

2011 MySQL Conference2011 The conference is now independently organized by O’Reilly with Oracle providing a keynote and a few sessions. The conference is extended to include a lot of other databases and technologies in NoSQL and BigData space – PostgreSQL, EnterpriseDB, Hadoop,Hbase, MongoDB, CouchBase providing compliments and alternatives to MySQL. The MySQL Community awards are presented by Monty and David in the conference keynote. Percona XtraDB becomes Percona Server and is now a full-scale MySQL alternative and not just replacement for the Innodb Plugin. MySQL 5.5 is now GA with no more funky version differences for MySQL Enterprise, just certain features available only in Enterprise edition as plugins. Early preview of plans for MySQL 5.6 more in the form of a code drop than promises what the final version will contain. MySQL 5.5.11 is GA and MySQL 5.6.2 is nonGA.

Percona MySQL Conference and Expo 20122012 marks the first year the annual conference is organized by Percona, with technical content selected by an independent committee. The conference is refocused back on MySQL and the needs of the MySQL community covering other technologies, as it is relevant to MySQL users. MySQL, MariaDB, Percona Server, Drizzle are all well represented at the conference. No talks from Oracle. Marten Mickos is back with a keynote, “Making LAMP a Cloud.” He’s now CEO of Eucalyptus. Percona announces Percona XtraDB Cluster as GA – the new approach to MySQL High Availability in and out of the Cloud. MySQL 5.5.23 is GA and 5.6.5 is nonGA at the time of the conference.

The event’s 10th anniversary begins in less than two weeks. We’re yet to make history about what will be remembered the most about it. It’s great so see momentum going stronger and strong, and I’m very happy to see the very broad participation by the MySQL ecosystem – with Oracle coming back to the conference, providing a keynote from Tomas Ulin, vice president of Oracle’s MySQL engineering team, along with some technical talks directly from the Oracle MySQL engineers who brought us MySQL 5.6. MariaDB and Percona products are also very well covered at this year’s Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo.

Forgot to register ? You can do it now with “Peter15″ discount code and get 15% off.

P.S I also would very much like to know what memorable moments do you have from you attending MySQL Conference over last 10 years. Please leave comment and share your experiences! Thank you.

Additionally, I’d like to offer readers the chance to win a free pass to this year’s Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo in Santa Clara, Calif., April 22-25. Share a memory you have from past MySQL user conferences on Twitter – directing it to @Percona and with hashtag #mysqlmemories. We’ll pick a winner at random next Tuesday.Good luck!

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Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo 2013: It feels like 2007 again

MySQL Banner: Keynote stageI actually don’t remember exactly whether it was in 2006, 2007 or 2008 — but around that time the MySQL community had one of the greatest MySQL conferences put on by O’Reilly and MySQL. It was a good, stable, predictable time.

Shortly thereafter, the MySQL world saw acquisitions, forks, times of uncertainly, more acquisitions, more forks, rumors (“Oracle is going to kill MySQL and the whole Internet”) and just a lot of drama and politics.

And now, after all this time some 6 or 7 years later, it feels like a MySQL Renaissance. All of the major MySQL players are coming to the Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo 2013. I am happy to see Oracle’s engineers coming with talks — and now with a great MySQL 5.6 release — and I have great confidence in MySQL’s future with Oracle’s commitment level, coupled with the fact that Percona Server and MariaDB are continuing to mature.

For this year’s conference I am going to give a tutorial titled, “Percona XtraBackup: Old and New Features.” I actually traded my other talk, “MySQL 5.6 improvements from InnoDB internals prospective,” with Oracle’s Sunny Bains and his talk, MySQL 5.6: What’s New in InnoDB. Sunny honestly knows more about InnoDB internals than I do.

There are going to be a lot of great talks, and I would have a hard time listing all of the ones on my list to attend — but you can check all of them out for yourself. But I will say that the greatest part of the conference is not talks, but what happens in between them — in the conference center halls and behind the curtains.

If you are lucky you can grab engineers from Facebook, Twitter, Google, Box, Esty, Pinterest, Tumblr, NING.com… and ask them any question and actually get an answer. You can even catch interesting rumors… and spread some of your own. Basically just be part of the MySQL crowd and really feel the great vibe (especially after a few drinks during the Community Networking Reception).

I am personally looking forward to another lengthy discussion with Dimitri Kravtchuk on how benchmarks should be run, what the next bottleneck in MySQL will be, and how we, with Percona Server, are going to beat MySQL in performance. And you can actually go and ask Sunny anything about InnoDB internals: He is one of the few engineers in the world who knows everything about InnoDB.

If you seriously work with MySQL, then you should not miss the Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo 2013. It runs April 22-25 in Santa Clara, California. But just remember: Advanced Rate tickets end on March 24th, so make sure you register this week.

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