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Can Oracle be trusted with MySQL?

ankush981 profile image Ankush Thakur ・1 min read

I'm sure you've heard that Oracle has just tightened its grip over Java (see here) and I'd like to have a discussion on this.

  1. Does this mean companies using Java are doomed unless they pay?
  2. Yes, there's OpenJDK, but I wonder how long before Oracle finds a way to milk it too.
  3. Are folks using MySQL safe, then?
  4. Is it time to switch to MariaDB?

Or perhaps, all these questions are an overreaction to a regular and predictable business practice?

Please share your thoughts!

Discussion

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  1. No. It means companies won't have access to updates unless they pay or switch JDKs to get out from under Oracle's thumb. Some will pay, some will switch, some won't bother to do either. Of the last set, a handful will probably have some embarrassing security breaches and an even smaller number might collapse because of those. "Doomed" is just scaremongering.
  2. From my understanding, they can't, at least not directly. They might try to offer features OpenJDK doesn't have and attempt to lock people in to their JDK, but that's about it. It'll mostly work on older/larger companies, who are much more likely to be buying Oracle software in the first place.
  3. As safe as the Java users.
  4. I personally don't think you should use either if you have the option but if you have to have MySQL compatibility I think migrating to Maria is a good long-term goal. But it's hardly a three-alarm fire at the moment.
 

Ah, yes, there's always Postgres! 🙂 But despite being a better database system, it can't replace MySQL simply because too many ecosystems out there are built exclusively for it.

 

My thoughts are that since Oracle is a for profit company, eventually they will try to monetize everything they own. Quite honestly, it's their fiduciary responsibility to do so as they are beholden to stock holders.

That said, if you don't want to end up paying them, the time to get off their software is now. The longer you wait the more systems you will have to pay for or convert.

While I don't see it as a rush, I do know that none of our new development will use Oracle Java or MySQL and we are planning to remove all use of these in existing systems.

Just my thoughts.

 

I'm not sure close to the latest details here, but I would think that yes, people can trust Oracle in a way. As far as closed source software goes, at least you're their customers and have a direct agreement with them, but in general I would say yes it's definitely time to go open source all the way with this sort of thing.

@asynchio perhaps you'd have an opinion here. 😄

 

Thanks for your comment. For one thing, I had no idea we could tag people directly here! 😍

I remember quite vividly the backlash when Oracle took over MySQL. I think the many people who didn't make the switch to MariaDB back then trusted Oracle, as you put it, in a way (the same way people are ready to trust Microsoft today). But I'd say by first suing Google and now this, Oracle is kind of showing its true colors slowly.

MySQL has tremendous momentum, but imagine the destruction a couple lines changed in the license overnight could bring! 😱