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This is THE MySQL performance book. Period!
Every chapter is very well crafted, with a precise balance between theory and practice, and full of invaluable nuggets, sometimes transcending the MySQL arena and applicable to any database! Such cases are Chapter 2-Benchmarking MySQL and Chapter 3-Profiling Server Performance, very solid foundations for the reading ahead.
All over the text, authors propose tools, examples of use and proven diagnostic techniques, that will greatly improve your performance firefighter skills and enhance your knowledge of MySQL internals. Nevertheless, what I liked the most from this book is taking into consideration the physical part of database structures in play when speaking about performance, which is something most authors don't include; plus treatment on MySQL high availability and cloud features, which we'll increasingly see on customers.
As you may know, MySQL architecture relies on what is called “Storage Engines” and this book provides resolution down to that level, describing behavior, pros and cons among each major storage engine, plus some improvements coming for MySQL 5.6 (now in beta stage). That is cool!!!
However, there is something that kind of bugged me at times and was references to a specific commercial MySQL offering and tools, but after taking a look to that company web-site, found that is a great contributor to the MySQL community and you can actually use the tools!
At the O'Reilly website you can take a look to the book's TOC, bet you will find it very complete; hey! you can even peek the content with Google Preview, just follow the link: High Performance MySQL
If you are interested on Mathematical Rigorous methods for performance tuning see Performance Enlightening - The Craig Effect (Tropa de Elite)
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