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Percona Announces New Version of Percona Server and Plans Percona Live Events for MySQL Community


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Percona, Inc. has announced the latest release of Percona Server, which it describes as its “enhanced drop-in replacement for MySQL.” According to the company, Percona Server Version 5.5.27-28.0 includes new features that make it more valuable as an alternative for MySQL users.   Offered free as an open source solution, Percona Server has self-tuning algorithms and support for high-performance hardware. 

In addition, the company is planning a two-day Percona Live Event for NYC in October and also for London in December, with speakers and tutorials spanning multiple tracks across the MySQL ecosystem.  A more expansive, four-day conference, Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo 2013, is planned for Santa Clara in April.

Santa Clara Conference

The timing and location of the April Santa Clara event are part of Percona’s effort to provide continuity and “fill a vacuum” left by a major MySQL conference that had been held annually up until 2011, Terry Erisman, CMO, Percona, tells DBTA. When the conference was not continued in 2012, says Erisman, “We saw that as real loss to the community and we stepped in and took the same type of space at the same time of year.”  The 2012 conference drew more than 1,000 attendees last year, and Percona is looking for significant growth in 2013, says Erisman. Attendees, he adds, tend to be people with technical roles within their organizations, including DBAs, sys admins, and developers, as well as sponsors.

Erisman emphasizes that there are a number of versions and branches of MySQL and that talks at the conference focus not only on Oracle MySQL, but also Drizzle and MariaDB, in addition to Percona Server. “Everyone is welcome. It is really a MySQL community event. It is not a Percona Server-specific event at all,” he says. 

Percona, explains Erisman, was founded in 2006 by former MySQLAB employees Peter Zaitsev and Vadim Tkachenko, who are also among the authors of High Performance MySQL, now in its third edition. Percona, which offers services and open source software to enhance MySQL and provides training as well as conferences, has more than 1,400 customers and more than 70 employees worldwide. In addition to percona.com, its corporate website, the company supports mysqlperformanceblog.com, a website that focuses on the technical aspects of MySQL and receives move than 200,000 unique visitors each month, says Erisman.  

The company sells MySQL support contracts, and supports Oracle MySQL, Percona Server, MariaDB and Drizzle. “We are agnostic to the version of MySQL,” says Erisman.  Percona also does project-based work and consulting related to the MySQL ecosystem, custom server engineering, and product evaluations with independent testing and results publishing, in addition to providing educational programs, conferences and training.

Percona Server

According to Peter Zaitsev, CEO of Percona, its Percona Server is software that can be used in place of MySQL, does not require any application changes, and provides performance, transparency and operational improvements. “In many cases, Percona Server includes features in the open source edition that are comparable to what is only available to users of the MySQL subscription version at Oracle,” says Zaitsev.

Just launched in August, Percona Server Version 5.5.27-28.0 offers advanced features that speed up searches, increase security, and provide administrators with more control over their Percona Server environment, according to the company.  

New Release Features

In the new release, tunable buffer size enables fast index creation in InnoDB. Adding an index to a table can speed up searches; however, previously the buffer was a hard-coded 1MB, which limited index performance. Using a fix created by the Facebook development team, Percona has added the tunable buffer to Percona Server. The default buffer size is now 8MB and can range between 1MB and 1GB.
 
For those operating Percona Server as a service, a feature in the new release allows the specification of a “utility user” that cannot be erased by the root MySQL user, enabling a watchdog process that can connect using the utility user to, for example, reset the root password without itself being root. The new feature increases security by allowing a PSaaS offering to exist without the hosting provider needing to have a login to the virtual machine or database server. The new feature enables capabilities such as "reset password" for service providers.
 
And, to provide more control over option visibility, access and range limits, Percona Server now offers new options to enable users offering Percona Server as a service to allow their own users to set server options within controllable limits.  In addition, to provide greater insight into the XtraDB storage engine, there is new access to undo segment information. Each row represents an individual undo segment and contains information about which rollback segment the undo segment is currently owned by, which transaction is currently using the undo segment, and other size and type information for the undo segment. This information is “live” and calculated for each query of the table.

Complementing the flagship product Percona Server, Percona also offers Percona XtraBackup, Percona Toolkit, and Percona XtraDB Cluster. More information is available at www.percona.com.

For details about the upcoming Percona Live Events in NYC and London, and the Percona Live MySQL Conference and Expo 2013 in Santa Clara, go to www.percona.com/live/conferences.


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