MySQL Simplified By Noel Herrick

Escape the Maze of Manuals

Learning to use MySQL shouldn't feel like reading a spec or listening to a rant. You don't use MySQL because it's enterprise or because it's cool. You use it because it works. You don't have time to be a master of esoteric facts or a follower of tech fashion, so focus on those things that are important and forget the rest. MySQL Simplified informs you of what you should know and what you should ignore so you can build things.

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Learn MySQL without fluff

Stop wading through the endless barrage of blogs, tutorials, and MySQL manuals. Silence the noise and focus on only those things that are truly important. This book is an opinionated guide that also gives its references. It's only the beginning, but I want to keep you from analysis paralysis by giving you the minimum you need to start using MySQL in production.

Stop doing ops

Your customers don't care about backups, indexes, or updates. Learn how to protect your system and keep it humming without extra busywork or ceremony. I show how to build systems that run by themselves, sending you messages if there's a major problem. You can stop worrying about administration and get back to shipping.

Maximize MySQL

MySQL is the little engine that could. Make sure you're using it to its full potential. It can save you days of coding if you use it right. Learn to maximize its benefits, and pick up some new tips and tools. You just might have fun.

How it works


With MySQL and its active community, there are many recommended ways to accomplish a task, some of which are wrong. I give what I've found to be the best route, but also the resources to find out about alternatives.


I show you the "fast path" to learning MySQL, indicating those parts that are essential and those sections that can be read if you need them. I also give you checklists and guides to provide you an outline of what you've learned.


I give you examples of working scripts, code, and commands that allow you to apply your knowledge in the real world right away.

About the Author

Noel Herrick

Hi! My name is Noel Herrick and I wrote MySQL Simplified. This is the book I wish I had when I started with MySQL. It contains knowledge I've gained in the past five years of working with MySQL. My goal is that this book will help you fast-forward your skills. I think you'll find this book worthwhile whether you're a beginner or a veteran.

I wrote this book in an attempt to cut down on the noise you find in most writing about MySQL. There is often no bridge between the documentation and the actual practice. This book is a very well documented set of scripts and sample code that does something, not lifeless words that just talk about doing something.

I currently work at Balihoo, a company that helps national brands like Aflac, Zumba Fitness, and Kohler market at the local level, where I manage their databases and guide database development. I have worked as a DBA and a developer for five years using Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, and PostgreSQL (with a bit of Redis and MongoDB mixed in), for companies large and small, on projects in the education, transportation, marketing, and agriculture sectors.

Most of what you will read in the book has been tested in production on the systems I manage, and some of what I cover has been learned very painfully in the school of hard knocks. My current project is learning to build a business by helping others with knowledge and skills I’ve acquired.

This is the book I wish I had when I started with MySQL.

Topics Covered

Backups & Restoration

Learn the best ways to take backups, without impacting your application. The book covers verification and restoration, so you can rest easy knowing your backups work and you have a plan if when things go wrong.


Dive into testing with MySQL. Every application needs tests, and this book will help your database development play nice with your tests.


Don't fear bringing on a bunch of new users! Learn to develop your applications with scaling in mind but without premature optimizations.


Figure out what you need to watch out for. Learn about vendors who can take away the pain of monitoring, getting you started in less than 15 minutes.

Cloud MySQL

This book takes a look at cloud-based MySQL – I will show you how to weather the storms and use MySQL-as-a-service to your advantage.

Intro to Development

Get a crash course in effective MySQL development. Use its strengths and avoid its pitfalls to build robust, scalable systems.


Working Scripts

Get examples of scripts and crontabs that make a functional MySQL system.

Checklists & Cheatsheets

Get thorough checklists that help you quickly install, configure, backup, monitor and maintain your system. It's like having your own bearded DBA.

Sample Databases

Look at an example database with tables and data to help you learn how to model your data, iterate its design, and deploy changes.


Get tips on MySQL and hear the news about the MySQL Simplified launch.

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© Noel Herrick 2013-2016