MySQL Rumours Rock Community
Oracle updated support packages spark rumours in the community.
Yesterday saw the rumour that Oracle were making the InnoDB feature unavailable in MySQL Community builds, spread throughout the community. This seems to have sprung from Oracle revising their support packages for MySQL Editions, when these changes were confused with the features included in the MySQL builds. Lenz Grimmer and Giuseppe Maxia tried to clear up the confusion via Twitter, with Giuseppe Maxia advising those concerned to “check the downloads page http://dev.mysql.com/downloads before freaking out” and Lenz Grimmer stating that “MySQL/InnoDB still available for download under the GPL.”
In reality, what Oracle are doing is dropping Basic and Silver support for MySQL. This leaves MySQL fans with the option of paying either £1849 for Gold or £3099 for Platinum license. Tien Soon has posted an analysis of the situation, disagreeing with the view that the elevated support subscription prices is Oracle’s attempt to kill off MySQL. He points out that MySQL no longer targets small to medium scale web applications, but is “one of the well-received database systems for enterprises,” therefore it no longer makes good business sense to offer Basic support packages. The crux of his argument, is that the change in support subscription, reflects the changing nature of MySQL usage: “MySQL is already standing strong with enterprise adopters who could easily afford the bill of MySQL Enterprise support packages, ranging from Basic (USD599) to Platinum (USD4999).”
He does acknowledge that small to medium customers will lose out, as the cheapest MySQL support package has leapt from $599, to $2000, but argues that this customer base “never contribute significantly to the profit stream of open source software support packages,” as most completely opt out of support packages. And, if a support package is required on a tight budget, there are always alternatives to Oracle support, and even alternative database servers, such as MariaDB.
In Tien Soon’s opinion, Oracle dropping the cheaper support packages, is just them focusing on the premier bill payers – a sensible business decision, rather than a vendetta against MySQL.