Sun has announced the official release of MySQL 5.1, a new version of the popular open source database software. Although Sun has declared that this version is ready for widespread adoption in production environments, MySQL creator Michael Widenius says that it has “fatal bugs” that seriously undermine the quality of the release.
The last major production release of MySQL was version 5.0, which launched in October 2005. MySQL 5.1 has been under development for a long time and includes some significant improvements such as a new plugin API, support for row-based replication, and table partitioning.
In a personal blog entry, Widenius describes some of the problems with the new features and warns users to exercise caution. He believes that it was irresponsible to release 5.1 in its current condition and says that it doesn’t deserve the “generally available” (GA) mark that is used to signify production-ready MySQL releases.
“We still have 20 known and tagged crashing and wrong result bugs in 5.1 [and] 35 more if we add the known crashing bugs from 5.0 that are likely to also be present in 5.1,” he wrote. “It’s of course impossible to get all issues fixed, but we should at least have tried to ensure that all issues important to a lot of MySQL developers and MySQL users should have been discussed, fixed and/or addressed in a public manner! We should also never have a single serious crashing/wrong data bug in a GA release.”