Migrating from MySQL 5.1.31-community >> MariaDB 5.5
One of our internal development db servers is currently running MySQL 5.1.31-community on CentOS 5.9 as it suits are needs internally for testing only purposes of our sites. I would like to use this box to install and test MariaDB 5.5 on. What would be the best method to make this transition as smooth as possible? The MySQL rpm's are not the ones supplied by CentOS, but are from the MySQL site. Should I do a dump of all the databases on MySQL, remove all the MySQL rpm packages, install MariaDB 5.5 via yum and then do an import of the databases? Or will I have to install a prior release of MariaDB and upgrade from there?
Also, all the tables are currently using the MyISAM storage engine. Just so I will have the best experience here and while I am experimenting, what storage engine would you recommend we try, Ari or? Some of these tables contain in excess of a million rows. Is there anything I should be aware of before converting tables?
Answer Answered by Elena Stepanova in this comment.
To migrate from MySQL 5.1 to MariaDB 5.5, it should be enough to uninstall MySQL packages without removing the data, and install MariaDB packages (and make sure that
mysql_upgrade was run after the new server was started). But it is always good to have a dump ready as well, and of course don't forget to make a backup before upgrading.
After you upgrade to 5.5, it might happen that the server won't start if you have some options in your config file that were deprecated earlier and removed in 5.5 (it could happen regardless whether you upgrade from/to MySQL or from/to MariaDB, only versions count here). One usual problem is
default-character-set in the server config, although there might be more. In this case just read carefully what the error log says and act accordingly, or ask if you can't interpret it.
Regarding storage engines choice, for the best experience I would recommend to do it one step at a time. Upgrade, see if it runs all right for you and you don't have any problems. Then, you can check Aria vs MyISAM KB page and see if there are any differences that you find potentially useful for your data and workflow. Check all sections regarding advantages, disadvantages, differences to fix and differences not to be fixed.
Potentially you could also consider migrating to InnoDB, but this is definitely not something you should make a decision about lightly, it requires analysis and often the internal knowledge of applications you are using. Even more so for migrating to TokuDB.