Comments - Replication and Binary Log System Variables
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binlog_row_image parameter introduced in 10.1.6 to provide the ability to limit which rows are written to the log. On previous versions, was the default behavior to always include all columns?
Found the answer here, it does log all columns (in MySQL, and by logical extension MariaDB) before this parameter was supported:
https://dev.mysql.com/doc/refman/5.6/en/replication-options-binary-log.html#sysvar_binlog_row_image quoted below:
"The default value is full. In MySQL 5.5 and earlier, full row images are always used for both before images and after images."