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postgres vs mysql

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BSD n00b

Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 34


postgres vs mysql

In my expirience, mysql is oftenly used than postgres, but people that I've talked to, told me that mysql implemented rollback in 5.x branch while postgrees has this for a long time. This was just one example, and being a beginer, I didn't understend much of the rest of their discussion. I don't want to start a flame war, but what are the adventages of postgres over mysql and vice versa? I still didn't took any tutorial/book about mysql/postgres, but I will have to. I would just like to start with the thing that is "better", and I can figure out what is "better" only from your response, and the things that sound better for me. One again, I would hate to start a flame war. I just want to start db administration/programming. Thanx a lot!!!
Sometimes we want so much to explain, that we forget about the five senses we have and that there can be better ways of communication than words!!!



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05-17-2005, 06:12 AM
Port Monkey

Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 363


I started using mysql recently for a website I am creating. Version 4.01. There was something I was trying to do and found out it wasn' t possible with that version but postgresql had always had that feature. However, I hear version 5.0 now has many of the features postgre had always had.

I switched to postgre because I felt that if it has always had many of the high level features of other databases then those features were built in and probably better implemented. Mysql gave me the impression many features were just tacked on later. For example, innodb needs to be turned on to use and you need to recode your sql statements to use it.

mysql is faster than postgre but this is because it does not implement many of the high level features of other dbs including postgre.

I had read mysql and postgre are converging over time.

Now I do have to say that I'm new to databases and stopped all work on learning them a couple of weeks ago to do something else, temporarily. So some of the things I've said may be incorrect but they are the impressions I have had so far. I am sticking with postgresql because I feel safer in that it will do everything I may need it to do.


05-17-2005, 08:20 AM
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BSD n00b

Join Date: May 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 2



Like the previous poster mentions, MySQL and PostgreSQL will (probably) eventually converge on both features and speed. Unfortunately, the two took two divergent paths to get to the same destination. MySQL focused on speed and ease-of-use (IMHO) first, then work on adding advanced db features. Even though 5.x includes many of the requested features that PostgreSQL has had for some time, some of these aren't even available in ISAM (the fast table format)... you have to use InnoDB. PostgreSQL, on the other hand, strove for correctness and an adheranace to SQL standards at the beginning. Now that most features are complete, they are left to optimize.

When you think about it, MySQL dug itself a bit of a hole. Even after they finish adding the new features, they will still have to go back and re-optimize after all the new code has been created.

I will admit though, MySQL still has a simpler CLI for the beginner. On the other hand, if you ever expect to have to use the "big metal" databases (Oracle, Sybase, etc), you would do well to familiarize yourself with PostgreSQL's CLI (psql).

Jason Dixon
DixonGroup Consulting


05-19-2005, 07:49 AM
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Kernel Saunders

Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: r3d $tick
Posts: 1,603


I've always looked at MySQL as "light weight" and PostgresSQL as "complete". You you need an enterprise solution, I would go for PG, but if you just want to run a simple web app, go with MySQL or even SQLite.

Some things that I like best about PG (though I have not used it in a while):
- mature trigger support
- mature stored proceedure support
- mature distributed db/fault tolerence
- standards compliance better than I've seen
- highly flexible enumerable data types - useful for high end applications like geospatial data, GIS, etc.

Take this for what it is worth. The last time I needed a db was a couple of years ago.


05-19-2005, 10:15 AM
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BSD n00b

Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 7


I work with Oracle by day and Postgresql when I get home. I would like to use it for work but the corporate world isn't so open to the idea yet.

I would go with postgresql. You will learn more and it has really good documentation and mailing list where people will help you.

I look at MySQL as more like Microcrap Access. It looks pretty and it's easy to use. But you run anything more complex then a personal work log and you can run into issues.

MySQL is not all bad but I would go the Postgresql route myself.

09-22-2005, 07:46 PM
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Port Monkey

Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Vancouver, eh.
Posts: 374


If you have a choice, use Postgres, particularly if you are a beginner.

You'll appreciate \copy; Postgres's command line interface isn't that hard either, \help is always a couple keystrokes aware. Forget what copy does? \help copy.

Most of my experience was gained over the years on SQL Server and Oracle with a little time spent on Informix, but I try to forget that time of my life. When I went looking for an open source database I chose Postgres over MySQL. It wasn't even a fair comparison... for completeness Postgres has always been a better choice.


11-04-2005, 01:54 PM
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