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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

MySQL driver for PHP

The MySQL native driver for PHP is an additional, alternative way to connect from PHP 5 and PHP 6 to the MySQL Server 4.1 or newer. It is a replacement for the libmysql, the MySQL Client Library. From now on you can use ext/mysqli either together with libmysql as you did in the past or with mysqlnd.

We have no plans to remove libmysql support from ext/mysqli, which would break existing applications. We just add a new, superior alternative to our PHP offerings.


You need the PHP source code to install the new development. In the current development state the new MySQL native driver comes as a patch for ext/mysqli.

1.Get the PHP 5 or 6 source code from You can check out the source code from the CVS repository on or download a source distribution of PHP.

For example, follow the instructions for Anonymous CVS Access to check out PHP 6:

cvs -d checkout php6
2.Replace the ext/mysqli directory in your PHP source tree

Remove the ext/mysqli directory from your source tree. Copy the ext/mysqli directory from the mysqlnd source tree into the source tree.
3.Run buildconf --force in the PHP source directory
4.Run configure --with-mysqli --enable-mysqlnd in the PHP source directory
5.Build PHP: make

Advantages of mysqlnd

The new development is licensed under the terms of the PHP license to solve any license issues.

During the early stage of the development we will offer it from MySQL. As soon as mysqlnd is feature complete and production ready we will move it to the PHP project CVS repository on

On the C-level mysqlnd uses many of the proven and stable PHP internal functions. All the code of the new driver is contained in the ext/mysqli source directory. There is no need to link any external libraries. Thus you neither need to install the MySQL client library to compile PHP with ext/mysqli support nor do you need to take care of versions. Compiling has been made easier.

The performance of some functions has been improved. We have measured considerable performance improvements, for example when fetching buffered result sets.
Features and Limitations

The 5.0.1-beta release covers the functionality of the libmysql beside some functions that are marked as experimental in the ext/mysqli documentation. Support for Prepared Statements and Unicode has been added.

From the API additions discussed with Community members in November 2006 during the Frankfurt PHP conference, we managed implement:

* improved persistent connections
* mysqli_fetch_all()
* performance statistics call: mysqli_get_cache_stats(), mysqli_get_client_stats(), mysqli_get_connection_stats()

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