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MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Monday, October 10 2005 @ 03:58 PM EDT

MySQL's CEO, Marten Mickos, finally answers critics of its new partnership with SCO:
"We thought about the deal for a long time and we thought it was the right thing to do," he said. "We want to serve customers irrespective of their platform." Business reasons were a driver for the deal, but Mr Mickos also appears to be following the advice of The Art of War author, Sun Tzu: keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

"In a partnership you exchange thoughts," he said. "If you exchange thoughts hopefully the other side will listen to you. We understand people get upset, but it doesn't help to just close them out and despise them, it doesn't help at all. We don't want to be the judge. We want to be the doctor. If we can provide the cure, great. . . .

"They used to say the GPL was unconstitutional, maybe with working with us they have proved that it is not unconstitutional," said Mr Mickos.

Um. Sputter. Huh? MySQL will accomplish that? Well, what do you know? And here I thought IBM carried that burden of establishing the constitutionality of the GPL, that enormous financial burden, with a lot of help from the worldwide FOSS community, and some hints from Groklaw's GPL Summer School. And P.S., we accomplished it already, without any help from MySQL.

They may have thought about the deal for a long time, but they don't seem to have followed the case very closely, or they'd know SCO dropped that claim a long time ago. And may I ask what is wrong about judging bad behavior?

I don't think MySQL knows SCO like we do, or they'd never imagine SCO will reform. I'm sorry, but that excuse doesn't pass my laugh test. This MySQL statement is profoundly offensive. Here's the translation inside my head: "We wanted to make some money, honey. And we don't sell Linux, so what do we care?" Had they just said they did it for business reasons, I'd probably have shrugged it off, actually. Not that I like anyone helping SCO attack Linux, directly or indirectly. I didn't like Microsoft and Sun paying them millions, because it helped them pay Boies Schiller to attack Linux via litigation against IBM and Novell and DaimlerChrysler and AutoZone. Look at all the financial damage they have done, by forcing these companies to defend themselves from the unwarranted attacks. Shall we justify that by saying it is important to support customers?

To spin it as MySQL has, that they are on some kind of educational ninja mission, is hypocritical. It also means to me that MySQL isn't really grokking what FOSS is about, or what SCO hoped to do to Linux and the GPL. That is important to know about them, don't you think?

The good news is that education can happen to anyone, and evidently the community reaction is helping MySQL to become better educated itself. The fact that they felt they had to issue this statement tells me they are aware that the community is not happy with them. At first, they issued no statements and wouldn't answer any questions. I believe they thought that if they could avoid saying anything, it would all die down. This statement tells me that it has not died down.

People judge a business by more than just their code, you know. We have to feel we can trust you to want to use your products. Microsoft is feeling that truth more and more, despite its monopoly muscle, and surely SCO has discovered this simple, human truth. MySQL has marked itself now, given itself a black eye, and I feel sure they will continue to feel the effects, unfortunately.

Businessmen are very smart, generally speaking, but one thing few of them understand: when it comes to FOSS, if you upset the community by violating its values, it will affect your business. It's not that boycotts are organized or anything simple like that. It's that decisions on what software a business should use are generally profoundly influenced by the geeks working there, and if they don't like your behavior, or your product, when the PHB asks them what to buy, they don't recommend your company.

Caldera learned that lesson, not that they connected the dots. That company absolutely never connects any obvious dots about GNU/Linux, not in any of its iterations. Caldera wasn't able to make a profitable business from GNU/Linux, but Red Hat was. What is the difference? Trust. Red Hat has a good record, overall, of respecting the GPL and FOSS values. If that changes, they'll do the dodo bird dance too. Caldera always tried to make the GPL stretch a little too far for comfort, and the community reacted accordingly. It was not organized. It was a natural reaction to Caldera not behaving in ways the community thinks are important. IBM grasps that, the need to respect the ethics and values of the culture that comes with GNU/Linux and particularly with the GPL, and they have behaved appropriately.

That is the secret to their support from the community, which has translated into serious money made from GNU/Linux, and it's something any business can tap into. Or out of.


MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye | 358 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
Authored by: LocoYokel on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:10 PM EDT
If any here please.

Waiting for the games I play to be released in Linux, or a decent Windows
emulator, to switch entirely.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Off Topic Here Please
Authored by: Griffin3 on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:12 PM EDT
And try to make your links clickable, like the example in red below the box you
are typing in to make this response you are thinking of, right this very moment,
as you type.

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:17 PM EDT
Sorry to rain on your parade and interrupt your rant, PJ.
But AFAIK you accomplished nothing that matters already.

[ Reply to This | # ]

It's really very simple
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:19 PM EDT

It's really very simple: having anything to do with SCO is harmful to one's reputation.

Entering into a business arrangement with them, which might help them to do more damage to the Linux community by increasing SCO's financial resources, is a very bad thing to do.

Is this complicated? What part of the above does the MySQL company not understand?

[ Reply to This | # ]

"We want to serve customers irrespective of their platform."
Authored by: Mecha on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:23 PM EDT
That was all he needed to say. Obviously he has something to learn from SCO, as
opposed to SCO learning something from him. That being "How to spin."
SCO isn't any good, but they are much better than MySQL was.

It seemed to me that he was trying to rationalize why he partnered with SCO to
the Open Source community (who feel a little let down by MySQL's business
decision). However, he should of just left it at what I quoted in the title.

That is a more FOSS answer than "Trying to mentor SCO" is. FOSS is
about freedom for the end users. By making MySQL available for SCO's customers,
we can provide for them the freedom of using our software like those who run it
on Linux and Windows have enjoyed.

However, he didn't say that. He must have spent too much time in the presence
of SCO that he picked up McBritis (a.k.a. Foot in Mouth disease - mmm Toe Jam).
I didn't realize that it can be caught if you sign a contract with SCO. But
there is evidence of this sort of thing happening to known SCO cohorts as well.
So I caution everyone to take care when you are in the presence of the top execs
of SCO as you may become infected as well.


I am not clever enough to write a good signature. So this will have to do.


[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:31 PM EDT
they might find out someday SCO(if it survives) that SCO can stake a claim to
MySQL. Either that or the technology in MySQL will show up in a future SCO

[ Reply to This | # ]

I just decided.
Authored by: cc0028 on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:34 PM EDT
Having spent two days last week at LinuxWorld Expo trying, amongst other things, to decide whether to use MySQL or PostgresQL for a one year project I'm just starting on, I remained undecided.

Now I've made my mind up.


[ Reply to This | # ]

Red Hat has done some things too.
Authored by: Mecha on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:43 PM EDT
I am a Red Hat guy. I started on it, and I am routinely using it. I like other
distro's too, I just have my preference.

When Red Hat stopped after Red Hat Linux 9 came out, people were not very happy.
So they quickly learned it was a mistake and spun off the Fedora Project. You
can get their Enterprise versions in Source RPMS, just not in binary/iso format.
Now they do somewhat support the project. But it is the MySQL business model.
Main project with a community supported beta. Sun has done this with
OpenOffice/StarOffice. They just did it again with Solaris. Novell has
recently done this with OpenSuSE (That name is just wrong. Like a double


I am not clever enough to write a good signature. So this will have to do.


[ Reply to This | # ]

SQLite as an alternative to MySQL
Authored by: Kevin on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:48 PM EDT

Wow. I'm just speechless.

I account myself fortunate that I'd already, for several of my projects, started a migration away from MySQL and onto SQLite3. I had started it not because of any political issue with MySQL, but rather for the simplicity that SQLite gives me. It is much easier to install and administer than MySQL, because it's all in the client program; it depends on the native file system for authorization and concurrency control. It's had transaction support right along, unlike MySQL where it was an ugly afterthought. It's wonderfully fast and light, yet scales to multi-gigabyte databases with ease (the first thing I built with it had a four-CD installer owing to the volume of data that users needed).

Its inventor won one of Tim O'Reilly's coveted Open Source Awards back in April for being "able to get Python, Perl & PHP people to all agree on something. No small feat." (O'Reilly's citation fails to mention Tcl, where SQLite was born and where it still lives quite comfortably. The excellent multilanguage support is another plus.)

SQLite's chief disadvantages are that its support for integrity constraints (both referential and data-type) is not really there, and it doesn't scale well to networked usage of a common database (as opposed to access from a single application server). Neither of these has been a significant hurdle for my uses.

Its "license" is the very model of simplicity: it's dedicated explicitly to the public domain. As I understand it, explicit statements to that effect have been obtained from all contributors.

I feel that I owe the readers of this comment disclosure of my interests. I have no connection with the SQLite project other than as a satisfied user, but SQLite's inventor and I collaborate regularly as members of the Tcl Core Team.

73 de ke9tv/2, Kevin (P.S. My surname is not McBride!)

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL will learn that...
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 04:56 PM EDT
"Contracts are what you use against parties you have relationships

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL will get sued by Darl sooner a later
Authored by: kawabago on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:01 PM EDT
He seems to sue everyone he comes into contact with eventually. A little pariah


[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL's position still not justified
Authored by: cmc on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:02 PM EDT
If MySQL AB had simply said that this decision was about business reasons, I
would accept it. If they said it was about money, I would accept it. I
wouldn't like it, but I would accept it. But no, they try to go on this false
high road and claim that they are doing this for the customers. Could someone
please enlighten me as to why they need to partner with SCO for this? Do SCO's
customers not know how to navigate their web browsers to Do they
not know how to click on the "Support" link? ANYONE can get MySQL
support. It's not like they're going to turn down support contracts. They'd
probably ask you what OS you're running, but they wouldn't say "I'm sorry,
that's SCO UNIX, we won't help you".

Following their logic, they better partner with Red Hat, Debian, and Slackware
next. I mean, come on, don't they want to support users of those operating
systems? What about Microsoft, will they partner with them? They release MySQL
for Windows; don't they want to support it?

Everyone knows this was about money. It's offensive to our collective
intelligence for them to try and claim otherwise. Then again, what do I expect
from a company whose pricing structure has now become a yearly subscription?


[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL hasn't understood the GPL for a long time
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:11 PM EDT
If you go to their website and look at their Commercial License, they state the
following (and have for years):

"If you include the MySQL server with an application that is not licensed
under the GPL or GPL-compatible license, you need a commercial license for the
MySQL server."

So if I write a non-GPL Pac-Man game and want to include MySQL on the disk, I
need a commercial license? Yeah, right. This is exactly what calls
"mere aggregation," and you can certainly use the GPL code in this

They have other claims in those bullets, too, that are plain wrong--the GPL can
fit into those scenarios just fine.

[ Reply to This | # ]

don't be a hypocrite
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:14 PM EDT
People talk about freedom, the GPL, and the ability to do whatever they want
(within the license terms), but then get upset when someone uses this freedom.

Sounds unduly harsh to me.

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL already blacklisted here
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:28 PM EDT
I wrote to MySQL shortly after they announced their association with SCO, to
advise them of the customers they were losing as a result of their decision.
Here is the reply I received:

Thanks for your feedback, it is valuable for us to hear from our users and
developers supporting MySQL.

MySQL a cross-platform an OS-agnostic RDBMS, it has been possible to run MySQL
on the SCO platforms for a very long time. I understand (from market research
sources) that there are about 2 million active SCO-platform installations. A
cross-platform database can make it easier for users to move to another platform
if they choose to do so. For some users though, porting is a complex, expensive
and unreasonable task. They are caught in the middle of the whole SCO situation.
I am sure you will agree with me that these users deserve adequate information,
support and related services for their existing production environment.

Initiating lawsuits is a constitional right in the US and many other countries.
Indeed, many lawsuits we hear about can be regarded as frivolous or even
malicious. But it is for the courts to judge the legal merits of the cases
brought before them, and for lawmakers to amend the legal framework where deemed

For instance in Australia (where I live), if someone makes a frivolous claim of
copyright infringement, they are liable for are significant damages. This is
built into the system, and does no require the unfortunately victim of the claim
to initiate civil counterclaims themselves. This safeguard of course means that
one would think twice about initiating frivolous claims, or without immediately
placing proof on the table.

Naturally, customers can always vote with their feet if they feel unhappy with
the ethical behaviour of any vendor, and that is a very powerful force. I would
however point to the case above, walking is not always an option for everyone,
particularly with legacy platforms. There is a reason that these users are still
using the platforms they do. These are not new deployments.

So for MySQL AB, the focus is on the users of MySQL on these platforms. We
believe that we can serve our users best in this way.

In addition to the above clarification of our reasoning and actions, our CEO
Marten Mickos has offered to talk with you directly and answer any further
questions you may have - this in particular because we appreciate that you feel
strongly about this matter, and there are many aspects to it.

The reply came from Mysql's Arjen Lentz. I did not bother contacting Marten
Mickos. My company's policy has been to blacklist SCO, its customers, and
associates. MySQL software has been removed from all computers at my company.
We have been advising our clients to do the same.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Not a good day for MYSql at all
Authored by: jws on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:38 PM EDT

Besides associating with SCO, Techdirt has the following link indicating that a company they should have bought or merged with is not in the hands of Oracle. Sleeping at the switch about associating with the wrong "partners" may not be their only problem.

techdirt article 20051010/000252

[ Reply to This | # ]

All MySQL AB has agreed to do
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 05:59 PM EDT

From the original press release:

LINDON, Utah, Sept. 2, 2005 -- The SCO Group, Inc. ("SCO") (Nasdaq: SCOX), a leading provider of UNIX(R) software technology for distributed, embedded and network-based systems, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with MySQL AB to jointly deliver a certified, commercial version of the popular MySQL database for SCO OpenServer 6, the newest release of SCO's UNIX solutions platform. As part of the agreement, the companies will work together on a range of joint marketing, sales, training, business development and support programs that will benefit customers throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. Additionally, SCO will include a trial subscription to the MySQL Network enterprise database service with each new copy of SCO OpenServer -- and offer full MySQL Network subscriptions through its reseller channel.

In short, they are making a certified package for SCO that they can support for end-users; and SCO is reselling MySQL support. All of which is almost certainly costing SCO money, not MySQL AB; for MySQL AB's sake, I hope they got paid in advance. To date, they do not seem to have built any binary distributions for SCO, so any users running on SCO would have to build it themselves. This deal primarily benefits end-users, since they can buy a version that they can reasonably expect to work, and have support if it does not. Of course, being able to do this does indirectly benefit SCO, which is a downside.

BTW, the people who are saying "use PostgreSQL" aren't thinking too clearly. Since PostgreSQL is BSD-licensed, there is absolutely nothing preventing SCO from building their own certified package and reselling it as a non-free-software product.

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 06:21 PM EDT
"It also means to me that MySQL isn't really grokking what FOSS is

I think you don't give MySQL enough credit. It's not that they don't understand
what FOSS means to the masses, it's about what FOSS means to MySQL AB. It's not
unusual that movements get coopted - just like at what the neocons or the
religious right did to the Republican party.

[ Reply to This | # ]

MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Authored by: ewe2 on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 06:43 PM EDT
Ahhh this is not surprising from a company with a major VC capital injection
recently. It's likely they'll go the opposite route to TrollTech and make
themselves irrelevant to the FOSS world.

Now would be a good time for FOSS developers to make user-friendly frontends to
Postgresql so we can route around such damaged code.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Who cares? MySQL is very overrated
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 06:47 PM EDT
It's a bit of a mystery why MySQL got so much buzz to it, when there is a much
better open source alternative. PostgreSQL is older, much more mature and fully
functioned, and non-commercial (unlike MySQL).

It may not be *quite* so easy to set up but it's still pretty simple, and
trivial compared with Oracle etc.

[ Reply to This | # ]

True colours
Authored by: star-dot-h on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 06:51 PM EDT
...and all that. I've said it before and will do so again :-), I believe the EFF
picked a "bad" cause when they took MySQL's case against Progress.
From what I can see reading about recent relaeses MySQL is still benefiting from
what they learnt during that relationship and sold the Progress guys a lame duck
in return.


Free software on every PC on every desk

[ Reply to This | # ]

Why so harsh?
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 06:56 PM EDT
P.J., you of all people should know something about forgiveness and salvation.
Nobody is completely beyond hope (not even SCO). Partnering with SCO doesn't
change anything at all about MySQL's business (other than getting some needed
revenue). They are still the same company with the same product, available
under the same terms. Perhaps they have enhanced the marketability of SCO's
software offerings by offering their support. Big deal - it will not save SCO
or even slow down their demise.

I read what Marten Mickos said and I can't see anything wrong with it. If you
do, please offer specifics. "Guilt by association" is illegal under
our constitution (Freedom of Association). In my opinion, MySQL has done
nothing illegal or immoral.


[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Why so harsh? - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 09:34 AM EDT
  • Why so harsh? - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 01:59 PM EDT
    • Why so harsh? - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 06:34 PM EDT
MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:00 PM EDT
I just don't get the problem with this. Sorry, but the GPL is about Freedom
with a capital F. That meens you are Free to do what you want, no? And so are
MySQL. They do dual-licensing, which no-one seems to mind either, and is
perfectly acceptable for other companies, notably TrolTech (the Qt widget
technology behind KDE). So why this double-standard just because MySQL are
selling stuff to SCO?

So what if MySQL starts a business relationship with SCO? That's MySQL's
business and none of mine, or yours.

I agree that MySQL's decision places it in danger of being sueued by SCO, based
on their previous behaviour and SCO's belief that "contracts are what you
use against people you have a relationship with". I wouldn't want to marry
SCO, but should I damn MySQL because they are open do doing business with them?
It's as silly as blaming Microsoft because terrorists use the Windows operating

Hopefully this is just showing that PJ has bad days too.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:14 PM EDT
MySQL answered me when I emailed them about it, but I didn't like the answer
that they want MySQL to be OS independent. But MySQL teaming up with SCO lent
them an image of respectability they don't deserve and MySQL would not have lost
anything not working with SCO.

But they've lost on least one of our projects. We switched to PostGRESQL just
before we were ready to start constructing the database. We're also looking at
Firebird and one other. Some of my older stuff is already on MySQL and I don't
feel an overriding urge to switch out stable systems, but their conduct toward
SCO will stick in my mind when it's decision time on new projects.

Hopefully this incident will point out to the overworked geeks everywhere that
they have more clout than they realize inside and outside their company. Kind
of reminds me of Fight Club. We run your payroll, your accounting systems, your
email. We managed your CRM and web services. Do not **** with us.

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Agreed - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 09:16 AM EDT
    • Agreed - Authored by: rwelty on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 01:19 PM EDT
  • PostGRESQL - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 09:18 AM EDT
    • heh - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 10:27 AM EDT
      • heh - Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 09:43 PM EDT
    Business case?
    Authored by: philc on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:15 PM EDT
    I really don't see a business case in partnering with SCO at this time.

    1) SCO revenue is decreasing. SCO is making fewer sales. How much money can
    MYSQL squeeze out of this?
    2) SCO's new upgrade is not flying off the shelf. Few opportunities to sell the
    certified product.
    3) SCO has a problem in retaining existing customers and is not gaining new
    customers. When a customer dumps SCO, will it also dump SCO's partners?
    4) SCO is a dying company. How long do they have? How long if Novell gets its
    5) MYSQL will end up having to support what SCO sold after SCO is gone. They
    will inheret the new owners. MYSQL will have to get in bed with the people that
    buy the remains of SCO at bankrupcy.
    6) MYSQL will have to spend money ramping up support on SCO. MYSQL will spend
    money training their support people on SCO. Maybe even hire new people to do
    7) It will take a while to get a certified product. How much interest will there
    be in the product by the time its ready. SCO may be near to death.
    8) There is a guilt by association factor that has started to dirty MYSQL and
    will continue to dirty them. Look at other responses for a hint of whats to come
    for MYSQL in the PR space.

    "Show me the money" Great quote. Works here. I don't see the money.
    Grabbing a rocket that is headed to earth is not a good way to make your

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Trolls and Astroturfers are out in force ...
    Authored by: Pugs on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:17 PM EDT
    ... with all of the "I like Groklaw/PJ when you do 'X', but when you do
    'Y', I don't like Groklaw/PJ."

    PJ, you must have hit a nerve.

    Good job!


    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL just uses the GPL as a hook
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:24 PM EDT
    MySQL's never been very community developed. They also switched their client
    library licence to the GPL without a lot of people noticing (and yes, version 3
    has this switch as well). So, probably 99% of MySQL users don't realize they
    have obligations under the GPL now. At some point MySQL AB will say "Guess
    what y'all, time to pay up!".

    I'd recommend PostgreSQL. It's much, much more advanced, is community
    developed, and addins like PostGIS that are GPL don't put obligations on the
    code that uses it.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    The phrase that comes to mind is...
    Authored by: Jude on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:31 PM EDT
    ... giving aid and comfort to the enemy.

    Note that the aid and comfort might not by themselves be illegal, evil, or
    anything else like that.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    No biggie -- SCO will still have it's demise
    Authored by: RedBarchetta on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:44 PM EDT
    Hitting on a point made earlier by Mecha, we really shouldn't be concerned with MySQL's reasoning for making this announcement. Granted, the CEO didn't seem to articulate his point as delicately as he should have, but overall his point seems to be reasonable (hint to CEO: get a corporate spokesperson with some of that VC cash).

    Ask yourself this, if you were a systems administrator and were given the task of administering a legacy SCO UNIX box, wouldn't you hope that someone, somewhere had the code and/or capability to ease the adminstration of that legacy box? How happy would it make the boss knowing you could squeeze another year out of that old SCO box/doorstop? You'd be a boy-wonder in his eyes.

    I've been the newbie employee who's been passed down the machine that absolutely no-one else could administer. Unfortunately for me, the internet then wasn't quite chock-full of solutions as it is today, and I had to make do with only my brain and my keyboard. If there had been some code, application or interface that would have allowed me to easily dump the data onto one of our HP-9000's, my task would have been 100% easier. It's times like that when you begin to appreciate efforts put forth like that of MySQL.

    So looking at the issue from the context of a system adminstrator versus a SCO foe tends to make one a bit more receptive to efforts like that of MySQL. I don't see any malice or lack of forethought by MySQL. I do see a CEO that shouldn't be opening his mouth for the sake of MySQL, and a company (SCOG) that will eventually see it's demise, regardless of MySQL.

    Collaborative efforts synergise.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Did SCO pay MySQL?
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 07:48 PM EDT
    My only real question is did SCO pay MySQL for this arrangement?

    Apart from that little bit of curiosity, I couldn't really care less either

    IANAL IMHO etc

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 08:17 PM EDT
    I guess if MySQL gets dragged in the undertow there's always Firebird

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Swedish middle class complex
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 08:28 PM EDT
    Well, as a Swede I think I can say this.

    Swedish people (as a generality) are usually pretty nice. But have a few foibles. One of them is definitely a HUGE middle class complex.

    To make my point; Sweden was at one point the 2nd or 3rd biggest buyer of cameras, but ranked at the bottom as a user of film.

    It's like the keeping up with the Jones's, here in the US.

    Some people are afraid to take a stand and profess that you should not judge them, or anyone else.

    Of course you need to daily make judgment calls, or you'll do something stupid. To decided that someone like McBrawl is not a good person to be friends with is a good call.

    The MySQL guys are having the same willy nilly stand as many other Swedes do. Typical is to hear how unimportant the individual is and the group is everything.

    Then when you point out that if the individuals are stronger, the group will also be stronger. It does not compute for them. It's like a held down 7 on a calculator. Whatever you do you'll get the wrong answer.

    Taking a stand requires back bone, unfortunately many people feel they cannot afford it.


    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL was basically bribed to go GPL to begin with
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 09:02 PM EDT
    MySQL should not be confused with true believers in the GPL. They were
    essentially paid to relicense by VA Linux. In effect, VA Linux freed MySQL, it
    was not the initiative of the MySQL company.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    PostgreSQL is a viable alternative
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 09:36 PM EDT
    PostgreSQL is a viable alternative to MySQL. It is even more stable than
    MySQL, and in general has better performance when it comes to bigger
    databases, it's feature set is huge as well, which is a big plus. MySQL has shot

    themselves in the foot by making this deal with SCO.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Just out of curiosity
    Authored by: sk43 on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 10:18 PM EDT
    What database runs on the backend of

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 10:20 PM EDT
    Okay. SCO sells an OS geared towards potential MySQL users. MySQL decides to let
    SCO bungle MySQL with their OS.

    This is different from e.g. Samba how?

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Wrong issue with Caldera
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 10:37 PM EDT
    When you start talking about Caldera, you need to get in your wayback machine to
    talk about what was going on with linux then, not comparing it with what linux
    is now.

    I used the Caldera products from Caldera Network Desktop 1.0 to OpenLinux 3.1.1.
    The product was generally overengineered, and everything worked out of the box.
    It also shipped with all the source code used to build the binaries. There
    were some types of packages that were not very good from open source, so
    proprietary solutions were used. The target audience was businesses or users
    that just wanted it to work and not have to fiddle with it. This seems to be
    the same market that Novell is targetting with it's offerings now. By
    comparison, the RH products never quite worked out of the box (for me) in that
    same time frame.

    I am coming to the conclusion that there just are not enough users that just
    want to use their computers to support that approach. That is why Caldera never
    turned a profit. Their product was more than good enough. That is why Novell
    is having trouble with SuSE profits.

    Caldera was not evil, or even malign. Caldera wanted to play in the same user
    space as Redmond. Linux has yet to jump that chasm. The problem came when the
    old management was ousted and the directive to turn a profit came down that
    caused the problem. That was when a lot of the engineers who worked for Caldera
    started looking for new jobs.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 10:40 PM EDT
    I must confess that I haven't read the agreement between SCO and MySQL, so I'm a
    bit ignorant on the details, but what's the chance that MySQL is counting on SCO
    folding and being able to take their joint work and get full credit down the
    road? Kind of like a "friend" helping you move when you're evicted,
    just so they can scoop up the stuff you can't carry with you?

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: cjcollier on Monday, October 10 2005 @ 11:18 PM EDT
    I think Marten means what he says. I've spoken with him a number of times about
    his understanding of the GPL and the community that has grown around it.

    He is quite well in touch, as much can be with so many users of the technology.
    I don't know if I'm at liberty to give examples, however. I'll have to ask his
    permission to put anything on the record. Do you want to discuss his decision
    with him directly to get a better idea what his thoughts on the subject are?

    Looking forward to hearing back from you.



    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 12:07 AM EDT
    Oh come on Guys. This was a business decision. That's all it is. MySQL sells
    liscenses. That's how they get thier money. SCO is just going to sell a few
    hundred (Thousand? if they still have that many customers)for them. Just
    business. What it really shows is how much SCO really thinks of their own
    statements on how evil the GPL is. Hypocrisy lives.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Partnerships are the least of your worries
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 03:52 AM EDT
    MySQL has one, and only one, thing going for it, and that is the fact it's
    become a de-facto standard.

    As for the rest, here's a partial list of issues with it:

    Its standards compliance is lamentable. It doesn't handle the normal SQL
    types, and handling of edge cases in those types it does handle is just plain
    wrong in many cases.
    it's near-impossible to migrate from any relatively complex MySQL codebase
    to another platform due to its 'oddities', 'quirks' and just plain strangeness.

    Ever wondered why stuff like mambo (which has a very clean codebase) won't
    run on anything else apart from mysql?
    It may perform a little faster than, for example, Postgres, but it's at the
    expense of functionality (triggers, stored procedures and the like)
    It has a distinct habit of soiling itself in a highly embarassing manner when
    used in a transactional environment.
    It only handles transactions on one table type (read - it only has one table
    type that can really be considered useful except in very marginal edge cases)
    Its licensing is odd, to say the least. Even the MySQL site can't give a
    particularly clear-cut set of rules as to what license you need. Basically,
    advice is "buy a commercial license, to be sure"

    Do not trust MySQL AB as for database feature comparisons. their
    comparison page is, to put it mildly, "slightly biased".

    MySQL could enter into a partnership with God, and it still wouldn't make
    their execrable toy worth considering for serious work.

    If you want a real, enterprise-quality, free database that's standards
    compliant, stable, mature, and doesn't lock you in to one platform any more
    than necessary, use postgres.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Gives Itself a Black Eye and PJ Makes it Two.
    Authored by: DaveJakeman on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 06:05 AM EDT

    When I read PJ's article, I first thought to myself: 'nice article, PJ - very well said'. But then I took the trouble to follow the link and read the whole of the original article. I was a bit disappointed to find it had been selectively quoted. This bit wasn't included, and perhaps should have been:

    While the company may have taken some flack [sic] from the community for partnering with SCO, Mr Mickos maintained that MySQL's track record in promoting open source and opposing the European technology patent directive should retain the community's trust. "That's a hundred times more influential than any deal with SCO could have been," he said.

    Now that may or may not be true and might still not be enough to mitigate MySQL's position, but let's just put it there for all to see.

    If MySQL can help existing SCO customers migrate to another O/S, that's fine by me. And if there are technical reasons for not using MySQL, that's also fine by me.

    It seems to me that MySQL means well, but it's underestimated how much hatred the letters S, C and O provoke in this community. Witness the above post, "MySQL already blacklisted here".

    Should one hear an accusation, first look to see how it might be levelled at the accuser.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 07:38 AM EDT
    great summary - my thoughts exactly

    who in their right mind would even want to do business with sco - gpl aside -
    they sue their own customers.

    we should all just let sco sit and rot like the dead tree stump they are.

    I don't use mysql - I always thought postgres was a better product so I am glad
    I don't have to migrate any databases now.

    Guess it won't be long that the mysql customers will get sued for something sco
    dreams up.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL Speaks & Gives Itself a Black Eye
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 08:10 AM EDT
    Does this mean mysql will start referring to us and long haired smellies.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Actually, PJ...
    Authored by: OrlandoNative on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 09:55 AM EDT
    To a company, supporting one's customers *is* the highest calling. Right up
    there with making a profit, or at least breaking even. Indeed, some companies
    have actually gone under trying to support their customers, in cases where a
    product sold may have turned out later to have hidden flaws.

    That's part of where the saying 'The customer is always right' comes from.

    It's sort of like one supporting one's friends... ...they may make errors in
    judgement, but if they're a true friend, does that mean you won't be there to
    help if they call on you?

    Like it or not, I suspect MYSQL has a fair number of customers running their
    software on SCO os's. We may not like that, but that was the customer's
    choice... ...or, in some cases, maybe an 'inherited choice' - from back in the
    days before the current SCOundrels became what they are today. Those customers
    expect, reasonably so, to get support; and if some degree of association with
    SCO is necessary to make that support quick and (relatively) painless for them,
    then that's the right thing to do.

    After all, it's quite likely that SCO may not be around all that much longer,
    but SOMEONE is going to have to start thinking about supporting THEIR old
    customers until they can find something else to run on...

    If we say, 'OK, go ahead... ...sink or swim' to those folks, we're no better
    than SCO... ...after all, isn't that what they were basically doing with

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    MySQL vs PostgreSQL -> Linux vs BSD
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 10:01 AM EDT
    no, I am not saying the situation is the same, except their licenses, but that
    seems the be a important point here.

    I've read quite a few posts already. Why do people have to so passionately
    denounce MySQL as piece of crap (paraphrasing here) and tell others that
    PostgreSQL is a much much superior work of craftsmanship. While, posts about
    SQLite tend to be a lot more sensible.

    Some pro-PostgreSQL posts (here and elsewhere) seem to be quite anti-GPL as
    well, which is pretty much like the Linux vs BSD thing.

    Isn't it enough to accept that MySQL is easier to deploy, despite its certain
    lack of features and compliance, which it makes up for in other areas. While
    PostgreSQL is older (probably means more mature, but that argument apparently
    doesn't work for Windows), more features and compliant, takes a bit more to
    setup, but still piece of cake compared to big players, and yes, very important
    point, it's BSD.

    Do you not understand that sometimes the strength is not in unity, but in
    variety? Isn't that why Linux is doing so well? because it has so many different
    versions for so many different tastes? Don't you understand that both GPL and
    BSD licenses are about making software Free? Why is so important that one side
    MUST be the RIGHT side and therefore the other MUST be done away with?

    There, it's done. Now kiss and make up.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Childish, childish, childish.
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 01:18 PM EDT
    Must you always see the world in black and white? Either you're with SCO or
    you're against them?

    I know another program which has been ported to SCO Unix, namely GCC, which is
    quite a central piece of GNU software that.

    SCO's users are not SCO's managment. Why should MySQL not give SCO's users the
    option of running their software just because SCO's management is doing bad
    things? And why should MySQL avoid catering to these users when it's in their
    interest? What have the users done wrong?

    For these reasons, the FSF itself decided that it should continue to support SCO
    Unix, despite what their management has been up to.

    Business is business. It's not a charity. In business terms, it's stupid to make
    a deal with a company just because you like the management. And it's equally
    stupid to avoid making a beneficial deal just because you dislike the
    management. Business is not about management. It's about the consumers.

    Too bad you can't see that.

    And face it: SCO has users now, and will continue to have users even after SCOX
    has gone bankrupt. There are existing support contracts in place. Someone will
    undoubtedly take control over those assets in case of the demise of SCO.

    Besides which, MySQL has contributed lots of very valuable and widely used code
    under the GPL. And MySQL can develop that code any way they chose.

    When Groklaw develops some software of their own one day, then they can decide
    which platforms they want to support, but it's none of their business to tell
    MySQL how to do theirs.

    And if you plan on not using MySQL anymore because of this, be my guest. But you
    should be consistent and give up on quite a lot of other GPL software (such as
    GCC) as well.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Who's the Hypocrite?
    Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 11 2005 @ 01:27 PM EDT
    Let us know how your migration off MySQL goes. You might want to keep buying
    pizzas for your tech team as they spend the rest of the month converting

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Who cares? Take the code and run.
    Authored by: clark_kent on Wednesday, October 12 2005 @ 04:47 PM EDT
    Gues what. This is exactly what Open Source is good for. Companies that do
    nothing good for the people can do as they wish. We can take their code, and
    place it into another project. If it forks, so what. Let them go. We have the
    code. Forget them.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Is it time to look at FIREBIRD
    Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, October 14 2005 @ 04:56 PM EDT
    I still don't understand WHY Interbase/Firebird is not widely used, even been
    superior to MySQL or Postgres. It's really a Industry grade powerfull RDBMS with
    full support of SQL not as (MySQL) we are using FIREBIRD for years without

    Maybe it's time to give FIREBIRD DB a chance...

    [ Reply to This | # ]

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