MySQL Embracing Microsoft Open Source Project

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Open source database server company MySQL's next production release of
its open source MySQL database server will be sporting a new Windows
installer, one partially built with an open source project courtesy of
Microsoft (Quote, Chart).

The WiX (Windows Installer XML) toolset that MySQL is using is
Microsoft's first official open source project and is freely available
via the SourceForge open source repository.

The upcoming 4.1 release of the MySQL Database Server includes Windows
installer files (file extension MSI) as part of a revamped and
improved Windows installer for the application. According to Matt
Wagner, production engineer for MySQL AB, the group considered a
number of applications for the 4.1 Windows installer feature on the
MySQL database server. They included InstallShield X, WISE, and
ZeroG's InstallAnywhere.

"But what we realized that we only needed the graphical designer part
of these tools to produce the prototype MSI file," Wagner told

"For this 'design' part, we chose InstallShield X simply because our
developers were familiar with it and sure that it could do the job we

Beyond the design needs, he said Microsoft's WiX fulfilled a
particular role in the installer development process. "Using WiX then
enabled us to convert the MSI into XML [plain text]," Wagner
explained. "Having the installer files in XML allows us to have
greater control over the installer, and to store the XML file in our
SCM, Bitkeeper."

"The WiX tools allowed us to easily integrate the packaging into our
Cygwin Windows build environment, a god-send for a mainly 'UNIX
shop'," he said.

MySQL is using Microsoft's WiX without the need for any official
interaction or agreement, financial or otherwise with Microsoft.
Wagner told that MySQL has no official contacts
within Microsoft (concerning the use of WiX).

"We are simply using it in 'good faith' as is customary in Open
Source," Wagner said.

WiX is part of Microsoft's shared source initiative and is licensed
under the CPL (define) license, which makes the application freely
available to download and use. According to Wagner, MySQL does not
have any concerns about the compatibility of the GPL (define) version
of MySQL with the CPL License under which Microsoft makes WiX

"The CPL was approved by the Open Source Initiative (OSI) in May 2001.
It is 'open source compatible'. It governs the use of the WiX tools,"
Wagner said. "We are not distributing the WiX tools, we are
distributing the resulting MSI files. As such, there is nothing to
worry about."

Microsoft's team leader on the WiX project, Rob Mensching, said he is
pleased about the project's new user. "I have a lot of respect for the
MySQL team," Mensching wrote in a blog post. "They always seemed to be
smart about building what their customers needed then added necessary
features over time. I can't tell you how happy I am that the MySQL
team picked the Windows Installer XML toolset."

Since annointing WiX as Microsoft's first "official" project on the
SourceForge open source repository in May, Microsoft has added two
additional projects, WTL (Windows Template Library), and FlexWiki.

MySQL Database Server 4.1 is expected to be available for download as
a production-ready version of MySQL 4.1 in the next month.

Re: MySQL Embracing Microsoft Open Source Project

user mysql wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

That doesn't interest me as long as i can get mysql without WiX (maybe
as zip).

For an end-user it shouldn't matter what installer he is using. The
features of mysql itself are more important.

BTW: I'm not shouting!

Greetings, Urs

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