MariaDB vs MySQL Performance Differences (Pros and Cons)

MariaDB vs MySQL Performance Differences. The relational database management system (RDBMS) is the latter version of a database management system (DBMS). Databases support the entire infrastructure of software and application, like a mediator between the application and the information received from the user. They are very important for software developers as it can potentially save data in an organized manner so it can be accessed or changed quickly and systematically.

Since they play such an essential role in the success of an application it is vital to choose the correct Database system.  They are two favorites, that are MariaDB vs MySQL. We will talk about  which one has better performance and what are performance differences?

Below is the overviews of  MariaDB vs MySQL and their pros and cons.

What is MariaDB?

MariaDB Server is among the most popular open source relational databases these days. The database uses a client/server model with a server program that files requests from client programs. It was created by the original developers of MySQL and it is Structured Query Language (SQL). MariaDB is a fork of MySQL or in other words an enhanced replacement of MySQL.

What is MySQL?

MySQL is the most widely used relational database management system (RDMS) in the world. It is one of the favorite open source solutions that supports most SQL features.

Similarly to MariaDB is a client/server model database. One of the factors that contributed to the rise and adoption of MySQL is its application of phpMyAdmin and WordPress.

MariaDB vs MySQL

In this section about MariaDB vs MySQL Performance Differences we will include main advantages and disadvantages of the two database systems in terms of performance. 

MariaDB Server Pros

Advantages of MariaDB

MariaDB is an open source software, but also offers backward compatibility. In other words, the MariaDB connection protocol is backward compatible. So you don’t normally need to upgrade older version of your old clients to be able to connect to a newer MariaDB version. Since it is forked from MySQL, it mostly has the features of MySQL along with some advancements.

Disadvantages of MariaDB

  • Since it is relatively new, there’s no guarantee of further updates and versions in the near future.
  • Another setback is that technical support is paid in MariaDB.

MySQL Server Pros

Advantages of MySQL

MySQL server is scalable and flexible. It’s features are high availability and it provides the developer with robust transactional support and data protection. All these features are given at a much lower cost in comparison to MariaDB.

Disadvantages of MySQL

Since it is owned by Oracle, there are many restrictions from the developer side. It is not suited for data on a large scale. Two reasons for this are that it does not support integration with other client applications and has lower storage options and even slower speed. The memory storage capacity of MySQL is less in comparison to MariaDB so it fails to support large thread pools at once.

MariaDB vs MySQL Performance Differences

The performance of a Database refers to the capability of a database to store data and retrieve it on the authority of the user’s needs. The speed of a Database, that is often considered as performance, specifically refers to how quickly it executes queries and completes transactions. We look more at the capabilities of the database management system than the actual speed.

MariaDB displays improved speed in comparison to MySQL. Particularly, MariaDB offers better performance regarding views and handling flash storage through its RocksDB engine. MariaDB also outperforms MySQL in MariaDB data replication.

MariaDB vs MySQL Row Compression

To meet the criteria of good performance, the given space for data storage needs to be utilized efficiently. MySQL and MariaDB, both use row compression.

MariaDB vs MySQL Partitioning

MySQL and MariaDB, both using partitioning, which especially helps with scalability. Performance of database systems becomes more important while scaling. 

MariaDB vs MySQL Database Views

“Views” are actually virtual database tables that can be queried like regular tables of a database.

This feature has been optimized in MariaDB as only those tables are queried that are required by the query. This adds to the better performance of the database.

Where in MySQL, when you query a view, all the tables that are connected to the view are queried, regardless of the fact that the query may not require some of those views.

MariaDB vs MySQL ColumnStore

MariaDB has an impactful performance improvement in the form of the ColumnStore feature. This is a distributed data architecture that ensures scaling MariaDB to a great extent. It can scale linearly, storing large amounts of data across various servers in a database cluster.

MariaDB vs MySQL Flash Storage

MariaDB is better as it also provides MyRocks storage engine. RocksDB is a database designed for greater performance in flash storage as it provides a great compression ratio.

MariaDB vs MySQL Segmented Key Cache

MariaDB has another performance improvement in the form of Segmented Key Cache.

The conventional cache, several threads compete to take locks (mutexes) over the cached entry. Where there aew multiple threads that compete for a mutex there can be a one that succeeds. The rest of them wait for the lock to get freed before performing the operation. This can lead to delays in execution and slows the database performance.

Segmented Key Cache the thread  locks only specific segment belonging to the page. Thanks to this feature multiple threads work in parallel that lead to better performance.

MariaDB vs MySQL Thread Pool Handling

MariaDB uses thread pools which contribute to better performance. Thread pools are like connections trying to link to the database. The connection picks up a thread to query the database.

Thread pooling provides a series of open threads pooled together that are not being used. When a connection requires one of those threads, it can simply pick it up and use it to query the database. Then the connection can drop it again once finished. This way, a thread does not have to be created every time a connection is opened.

MySQL also has the ability to thread pool, but it is only available in the Enterprise level. So, the free version does not include thread pooling. MariaDB, on the other hand, comes with an advanced thread pool which allows it to handle more than 200,000 simultaneous connections.

MariaDB vs MySQL Storage Engines

One of the most appreciated features of MySQL is its capability to work with various data storage engines, chosen per table.

This feature is present in MariaDB and even more advanced due to a wider array of options available to the developer. These engines include the above mentioned ColumnStore and RocksDB.

It is interesting to note that you can also add these engines to a standard MySQL installation, but it can be a difficult process.

MariaDB vs MySQL System Versioned Tables

System versioned tables are a feature only provided by MariaDB atm. They allow the storage and querying of historical data in the database itself. Comparing old and new data becomes very quick and convenient. This might be a small feature, but goes a long way in performance.

The graph below is a comparison of the performance of MariaDB and MySQL using Sysbench. It shows that for the same data, MySQL always has a greater latency than MariaDB.

MariaDB vs MySQL Performance Differences Conclusion

It is evident from our comparison that  MariaDB has superior technical qualities compared to MySQL.  MariaDB is very powerful and provides several features that are extremely useful and are not supported in MySQL. Those features certainly give the developer better performance and make MariaDB a popular choice as the primary backend database.

MariaDB and MySQL are both very similar since they have the same creator. However, MariaDB offers greater features like improved speed.

MySQL on the other hand is a trusted and reliable database manager and it has been in the game for several years.

From a developer’s perspective it is vital to keep in mind what does certain organization already using from database point of view. Sometimes is best to use the database service already in service and gain complete expertise in it in order to ensure the best performance and efficiency.

Avatar for Emad Bin Abid
Emad Bin Abid

I'm a software engineer who has a bright vision and a strong interest in designing and engineering software solutions. I readily understand that in today's agile world the development process has to be rapid, reusable, and scalable; hence it is extremely important to develop solutions that are well-designed and embody a well-thought-of architecture as the baseline. Apart from designing and developing business solutions, I'm a content writer who loves to document technical learnings and experiences so that peers in the same industry can also benefit from them.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x