Comments - Drop-in replacement on Debian
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There is a bug report for this to track fixing it:
The basic problem is that there are two versions of package libmysqlclient18, the standard Debian package and the package from the MariaDB repo. And apt-get considers the standard Debian package as having the higher version and prefers to install that.
So one work-around is to explicitly request the MariaDB version:
apt-get install mariadb-server-5.5 libmysqlclient18=5.5.28-mariadb1wheezy
Background: It used to be that this was not an issue, as Debian and Ubuntu normally do not put newer upstream versions into released distro versions. Thus the MariaDB version would always be newer, and this problem does not occur.
But Oracle has implemented its own ideas of security fix policies for MySQL, which means that details of security patches are kept proprietary. This makes it impossible for distros to backport security fixes, so they have to instead put new upstream releases into stable distro versions. As a side effect, the MariaDB versions can now lag behind the standard distro versions.