Drizzle – the forecast looks good – MySQL alternative

Drizzle is a relatively new project with the aim of producing a lightweight relational database system based on MySQL. From the Drizzle website:

“Drizzle is a community-driven project based on the popular MySQL DBMS that is focused on MySQL’s original goals of ease-of-use, reliability and performance. The Drizzle team is removing non-essential code, refactoring the remaining code, switching to a microkernel architecture (with well-defined APIs) and generally making Drizzle into a lean, mean query-running machine.”
One of the biggest drivers for the lean kernel and quick bootstrapping of Drizzle is to make it an ideal database to use on cloud architectures. It is important to note that due to this, windows compatibility was removed from Drizzle.

It is quickly apparent that creating a stripped down version of MySQL wasn’t their only goal as the system includes a comprehensive plugin architecture. This allows many options for integration.

Pluggable authentication allows you to use plugins to authenticate using something like LDAP or HTTP. A pluggable query filter allows you to block or filter queries before they get executed. With the pluggable query cache (still in development), you could even plug in something like memcache. Even SQL functions are pluggable, allowing you to write custom functions.

Drizzle can be installed using apt-get, RPM’s or can be easily compiled from source. Installation is made even simpler because there is no bootstrap step and no system tables that need to be created.

Starting up Drizzle is simple, with the only required parameter being the data directory: drizzled –datadir=/my/data/path

Plugins can be installed using apt-get and need to be enabled when starting up the daemon, for example: –plugin-add=md5,pbxt

Drizzle is still in alpha and major new changes are introduced on a daily basis, so its not quite ready for your production environment, but it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on this project.

For more information, visit the project wiki.

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