MySQL FAQ

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What is MySQL?

MySQL is a database management system.
A database is a structured collection of data. It may be anything from a simple shopping list or a picture gallery or the vast amounts of information in a corporate network. To add, access, and process data stored in a computer database, you need a database management system such as MySQL Server. Since computers are very good at handling large amounts of data, database management plays a central role in computing, as stand-alone utilities, or as parts of other applications.

MySQL is a relational database management system.
A relational database stores data in separate tables rather than putting all the data in one big storeroom. This adds speed and flexibility. The tables are linked by defined relations making it possible to combine data from several tables on request. The SQL part of "MySQL" stands for "Structured Query Language" the most common standardised language used to access databases.

MySQL, the most popular Open Source SQL database, is developed and provided by MySQL AB. The MySQL web site ( http://www.mysql.com ) provides the latest information about MySQL software and MySQL AB.

How do I use MySQL?

Information on your MySQL databases can be accessed via the Member Tools area here: https://members.sonic.net/databases/manage/ . The host name, user name, and database password are listed in this category. Usually a CGI ( see our CGI FAQ ) will be used to pass data between the database and the user. There are dozens of books written on using various programming languages to create CGIs for use with MySQL. The most common are Perl ( http://www.perl.com ) and PHP ( http://www.php.net ). Both are supported on Sonic.net's web servers. We have also integrated phpMyAdmin into the Member Tools ( https://members.sonic.net ), which is a powerful, easy to use MySQL database manager.

Why do I need MySQL?

If you have any information such as products, dates, customers, pictures, or any data that is not static, a database is an efficient way to manage that information. Sites that contain message boards, guest books, dynamic galleries, contact lists, or online product information can greatly benefit by storing their information on our fast, reliable and secure database server.

How do I get MySQL?

You can add a MySQL (or PostgreSQL) database using the Add Database Member Tool.