Obtaining MySQL and Related Software
To use this book, you must install MySQL if you haven't already done so, but you need install only those third-party tools that you plan to use:
Precompiled binaries are available for many of the installation packages. For example, RPM files are available for Linux. If you prefer to compile software from source, or if a binary distribution isn't available for your platform, you'll need a C compiler (C++ for MySQL).
If you have an account with an Internet service provider that offers MySQL services, then it's very likely that all these packages have been installed already. In that case, you can go ahead and use them and skip the rest of this appendix. Otherwise, the primary distribution points for each of the packages you'll need are shown in the following table. Several of these sites offer mirror sites that provide the same software but that may be closer to you and result in better download times.
The version and distribution format of a package that you install depends on your needs:
The Web sites for each package indicate which versions are the latest stable releases and which are development releases. They also provide per-version feature change lists to help you decide which release is best for you.
Some binary distributions are available in the native packaging format for a given platform, such as RPM files for Linux or DMG packages for Mac OS X. Other more generic formats also are available, such as compressed tar files for various Unix systems and Zip archives for Windows.
If you are working with a binary distribution, unpacking it is equivalent to installing it because the files are unpacked into the directories where you want them to end up. On Unix, you might need to be root to unpack a distribution if it installs files in protected directories.
Source distributions generally take the form of compressed tar files. You can unpack a source distribution into the area that you want to use for compiling, and then install the software into the desired installation location. On Unix, you might need to be root to perform the install step, but that should not be necessary for any configuration or compilation steps.
If you are installing from source on Unix, several of the packages discussed here are configured with the configure utility, which makes it easy to set up and build software on a variety of systems. If a build fails, you might need to rerun configure with different options than those you originally specified. Before doing so, you should prevent configure from picking up information that it saved from the previous time you ran it. Clean out the stored configuration like this:
% make distclean
Or like this:
% rm config.cache % make clean