MySQL, is the most popular Open Source SQL database management system, which is developed, distributed, and supported by Oracle Corporation. The SQL part of “MySQL” stands for “Structured Query Language”. SQL is the most common standardized language used to access databases.
The MySQL Web site (http://www.mysql.com/) provides the latest information about MySQL software.
MySQL is database management system
A database is a structured collection of data. It may be anything from a simple shopping list to a picture gallery or the vast amounts of information in a corporate network.
MySQL databases are relational
A relational database stores data in separate tables rather than putting all the data in one big storeroom. The database structures are organized into physical files optimized for speed. You can set up rules governing the relationships between different data fields, such as one-to- one, one-to-many, unique, required or optional, and “pointers” between different tables.
MySQL software is Open Source
Open Source means that it is possible for anyone to use and modify the software. Anybody can download the MySQL software from the Internet and use it without paying anything. If you wish, you may study the source code and change it to suit your needs. The MySQL software uses the GPL (GNU General Public License), http://www.fsf.org/licenses/, to define what you may and may not do with the software in different situations. If you feel uncomfortable with the GPL or need to embed MySQL code into a commercial application, you can also buy a commercially licensed version (http://www.mysql.com/company/legal/licensing/)
The MySQL Database Server is very fast, reliable, scalable, and easy to use
MySQL Server can run comfortably on a desktop or laptop, alongside your other applications, web servers, and so on, requiring little or no attention. If you dedicate an entire machine to MySQL, you can adjust the settings to take advantage of all the memory, CPU power, and I/O capacity available. MySQL can also scale up to clusters of machines, networked together.
MySQL Server works in client/server or embedded systems
The MySQL Database Software is a client/server system that consists of a multi-threaded SQL server that supports different backends, several different client programs and libraries, administrative tools, and a wide range of application programming interfaces (APIs).