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Old 05-25-2006, 05:07 AM   #1
LoisWakeman
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Default mySQL vs SQL Server

A friend of mine is a webmaster for someone currently running their ASP site off an Access database, but they are outgrowing it and thinking about moving to SQL. The requirement includes automatic synchronising of the database (in both directions) between a staging and production server.

Apart from the obvious differences in cost and support culture between open source and proprietary products, does anyone have any opinions from experience of the relative usability and ease of development of either/both systems? No MS bashing needed

(ISTR that years ago MySQL didn't support transactioning, but is that still the case?)
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Old 05-25-2006, 08:43 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoisWakeman
A friend of mine is a webmaster for someone currently running their ASP site off an Access database, but they are outgrowing it and thinking about moving to SQL. The requirement includes automatic synchronising of the database (in both directions) between a staging and production server.

Apart from the obvious differences in cost and support culture between open source and proprietary products, does anyone have any opinions from experience of the relative usability and ease of development of either/both systems?
Nothing too obvious there, since MySQL has paid licences and paid support - which may be required for some professional use anyway.

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Originally Posted by LoisWakeman
(ISTR that years ago MySQL didn't support transactioning, but is that still the case?)
MySQL (in newer versions at least) does support transactions - as far as I know partly dependent on what storage technology you use. It didn't for a long time, for a reason: speed. Transactions cost time, and a system that supports transactions if you don't need them is slower than a system that does not. MySQL owes a large part of its spread to its speed.

In general, I'd go with MySQL anytime because of its widespread support in the open-source community, with numerous tools (some free, some not) and open source languages providing native support. A beginner can set up a professional-level system for free, with free tools and free languages. A corporation can have a paid-for license with professional support for MySQL itself, and (mostly still inexpensive) professional tools. And anything in-between, depending on usage and requirements.

It adds up to a wider range of support, a wider range of tools, and a larger community around it in which to find peer-to-peer support and development. To me, that would be a clear advantage - an advantage driven by open-source software - even if for a particular solution you're not necessarily paying less.

   
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Old 05-25-2006, 02:13 PM   #3
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It may depend it part on some of the feature-set they use with MSSQL; if they are in the habit of using server-based dependencies then PostgreSQL may be a better choice. MySQL just introduced server-side scripting in v5 so it's not as mature as the PgSQL scripting options. OTOH PgSQL is rigorous (anal) about identifier case whereas MySQL and MSSQL are lax; apps using a mix of camel-cased and lower-cased field names may be more difficult to convert.

Last year I helped a client migrate an application from an Access database (shared via Lantastic) to a PgSQL database (hosted on Linux). Regrettably the app itself is still written in Access (the developer's preferred language) - I have suggested and am "toying" with a web-accessible version written in Ruby-on-Rails.
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Old 05-25-2006, 10:18 PM   #4
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Thanks Gary and Marjolein for your insight: much appreciated. I'll pass it on to my chum.
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