Installing MySQL 5.2.5

The MySQL database management system, available under the GNU license (also available under a number of other propriety licenses) is very popular, especially for web applications, due to its speed. I believe part of its speed is because it had certain features one comes to expect in DBMSs missing. Some of these features included referential checking. One feature for me that I really missed, that I had available to me in Microsoft’s SQL Server was support for stored procedures. MySQL AB added support for stored procedures in version 5.0. That is totally awesome! Time to upgrade to 5.0.

To get MySQL 5.2.5 (which is the latest release version at the time of this posting), you can go to the downloads section of the site and download the “MySQL Community Server” version which is released under the GNU license. There really isn’t too much technical difference between the “MySQL Community Server” version and the “MySQL Enterprise” version other than with the enterprise version you get the added on services such as updates, testing and monitoring, technical support etc. The kinds of services you would need if you were running your enterprise data and applications on MySQL. Since my needs are rather minimal (for now) I will stick to the community server.

Before I continue, you need to note that I am installing MySQL on a Windows XP Pro machine that I use for development in addition to the everyday computer usage. In addition, I am doing a fresh clean install and not upgrading from a previous version. This is important to note because somewhere in the process I had to delete certain data files and so I didn’t have to worry about losing any valuable data. If you are upgrading and your have data that you want to preserve, my advice is to back-up all your data and then make sure you can restore that data before taking down your old MySQL install!

Now back to the installation. For the most part, installing MySQL 5.x is pretty straightforward.

The first step is installing the core engine. All you need to do is double-click on the installer and follow the wizard prompts to install the engine.

Once that is complete, the next step you’ll take is to configure your database instance. At the end of the core engine install, you will be given the opportunity to configure the install. If you choose choose not to at this time, or you want to reconfigure your instance, you can launch the wizard by going to

Start Menu > Programs > MySQL > MySQL Server 5.0 > MySQL Server Instance Config Wizard

Once you have launched the wizard, once again most of the configuration options are straight forward and will depend on your preferences. Once you have all your preferences selected, you will click the ‘Execute’ button so that the instance will be configured. This is where it can get a little tricky. The wizard performs four main actions. The first two actions, 1. ‘Prepare the Configuration’ and 2. ‘Write Configuration File’ are pretty much straightforward.

The third step, ‘Start Service’ tends to have a problem for many, in that case, they will get the following error,

‘The service could not be started. Error: 0.’.

The screenshot below shows what the error message looks like.

MySQL Config Wizard Service Start Error

To fix this error, you will want to navigate to your ‘data’ folder in your MySQL install directory, i.e.

…\MySQL\MySQL Server 5.0\data

and delete the following three files

  1. ibdata1
  2. ib_logfile0
  3. ib_logfile1

At this point, you should now be able to rerun the wizard and move part the third step that is ‘Start the Service’.

I also had a problem with the forth step which was ‘Apply Security Settings’. The wizard below shows the error that I got, i.e. ‘

The security settings could not be applied
Error Number 2003.
Can’t connect to MySQL server on ‘localhost’ (10061)

Could not apply security settings

This one was even trickier to solve since none of the advice over the internet was able to solve this problem. Eventually I was able to solve this kind of by luck. All I did was to click the ‘Back’ button, then the ‘Execute’ button to rerun the four configurations steps… and it worked. Just like that! Pretty bizarre I must say.

I haven’t had any problems at all though and I now a full working install of MySQL 5.2.5 working on my desktop. I also have local copy of WordPress running very smoothly so I know my MySQL install is running fine.

There are a couple of things to note. Even though I claim that I was doing a fresh clean install, I actually had a previous install of MySQL 5.1 which I had corrupted when I was playing around with the settings. Since I didn’t actually have any data stored in the database, I wasn’t too worried about having corrupted the database and rather than trying to repair it, I decided to upgrade to 5.2.5. So I uninstalled the older instance and installed 5.2.5. My understanding about MySQL is that when you uninstall it, the uninstall process does not remove the contents of the …\data folder for obvious reasons. If this is the case, then this will explain why one would get the The service could not be started. Error: 0.’ error in step 3 and consequently why one would need to go in and delete the three mentioned files. This is also why you must back-up your database before upgrading!

Hope this posting is helpful if you have having issues installing/upgrading MySQL

Bye, Bye Xitami, Hello IIS 6

I have spent the last two days trying to configure a new install of PHP 5.2 to work on with my new local install of Xitami web server. This was not a great experience simply because I could not get PHP to work satisfactorily with Xitami.

What’s even worse is that there is no longer good documentation on installing and configuring Xitami. In a bid to find out why this was so, plus the fact that there did not really seem to have been an updated (or new) release in a while, plus the fact that the Xitami homepage design had not changed in the last 8 years, I did some digging around and found this interesting entry in Wikipedia.  In essence, the entry notes that development on Xitami ended in about 2000 thus confirming some of my suspicions about no new versions having been released in a while…. more like 7 years!

Although I think Xitami web server is still a decent web server for local machines (or laptops), I have finally come to the conclusion that its time to let Xitami rest in peace.  Since I was able to get PHP configured and working great on IIS 6, I finally decided that I really don’t need Xitami and more and it would make sense that I use IIS instead. Another reason for this decision is that since I have a number of C#, ASP.Net projects planned, rather than switching back and forth between two web servers, I should stick to IIS.

Yes, I also though about installing and using the Apache web server, but I don’t really want to spend the time to download and figure it out. I think a better investment of my time would be to make sure that the rest of my scripting engines, PERL, Ruby, Python, all work with IIS.

Vacationing, Breaks and Unexpected News

, originally uploaded by andai.

One of my favorite pictures take on a four day trip to a city I always enjoy visiting, Vancouver BC. Though it was a little chilly, the sun was out, the clouds where no where to be seen and the sky, the water and the buildings were a really beautiful deep blue and all seemed calm…

Yet, the picture is also bitter sweet since I took this picture on the same day (different time zone) my brother died. I actually got the news the following day… This particular trip will be always stick in my mind for that reason…

Your Soul is Eternal!

I was listening to a sermon titled “The Millennium and More” by Pastor Ken Ortize from Calvary Chapel Spokane. On Thursday evenings, he leads a bible study where he covers a book from either the old or new Testament, going verse by verse till he finishes the book. The past number of months he has been going through the book of Revelation, and I just finished listen to his teachings on Revelation 20:1-6. There are a number of points he made that really struck me, but none more than when he pointed out the fact that the soul is eternal.

Now if you sit down and really think about this, it is a very significant point. Why? Because this would mean that when you die, that is simply a physical death. You physical body is no more, but your soul remains… And if your soul remains, then it must go somewhere… where you ask? Well, if you are a bible believing Christian, then your soul will end up in one of only two places… heaven or eternal damnation….

My brother passed away almost two weeks ago. The impact of his death was much greater on me than my mom’s passing away almost ten years ago so two significant reason. The first being that me and my brother were less than a year apart in age and now its weird to think that I have actually lived a longer life than my brother. I still feel ‘young’, but…

The second and even bigger reason this death has hit me is because I believe there is an afterlife and I don’t know where he is. My mother was a born again Christian when she died, so I really don’t worry about her, but with my brother it’s different. Hence I am fearful for him. And for this reason, I have been thinking about death much more in the past couple of weeks than I have in the past. I also feel that his death puts more perspective to the way I am living my life and what that will mean in the end. It’s really hard for me to imagine that he is gone, yet it also reminds me how none of us really know when our time will come. We think we do and we can prepare for it, but we really don’t know when the Lord decides our time is up… Jesus told an interesting parable in Luke 12:16-21 that really in some way reminded me of this.

So this comes back to the question that I have always tried to get clarification on, that is, what happens to the soul when one dies? Well as a bible believing Christian, I believe that you either end up in heaven (that is paradise), or you end up in hell as you wait for judgment day. On judgment day, you will face what is known as the great white throne judgment where you are not so much facing a hearing and deliberation but more like your sentencing. I will talk more about this in a couple of the next posts or so…

Winter’s Child is Gone…

In Remembrance…, originally uploaded by andai.

First of all, I would like to apologize because I am unable to journey back home to attend the funeral service. One can never prepare for such unexpected events.

It was with shock and disbelief that read the email message from my dad and a second email from my brother where they informed me of the passing away of my brother Mike. This was on the morning of Friday November 30th. In some ways I was wishing it was a dream and that I would wake up shortly, yet somehow I kept thinking, “his is gone!” I just couldn’t comprehend this since I was not aware of any illness that he might have been suffering from. But deep down I knew that he had truly passed away.

I last saw Michael in May 1998 when I flew back from Spokane, Washington USA to attend the funeral of my mother. I remember some of the things we talked about then. I also remember not speaking to him for a long time until just a couple of months ago. We talked about how he was doing and how Adah and the kids were doing. I also let him know that I was planning to come back next year in May, for my mother’s memorial service. I was looking forward to catching up with him and Adah , and finally meeting the kids for the first time.

As I get older, I continue to understand how little I know about life and what the future holds for me. I think when I was younger I was very self-centered, never really thinking about such issues. Yet with age comes a certain type of wisdom. This wisdom teaches us that nobody truly knows what tomorrow will bring. For some, tomorrow will bring happiness and joy, yet for others it will bring sadness and grief.

One thing I do know for sure is that one day I too will be gone. I don’t know when that day will come, only The Lord knows…. but that day will come. When I too am gone I want to know that I have made a positive difference in somebody’s life. I want to be known as someone who was kind to others, who was generous and reached out to those in need. The Michael I know was such a person. He was neither the wealthiest nor the most powerful person in Mumias but I believe he was the one with the biggest heart. Although there are many examples I can think of, the single biggest example of his selflessness was when he donated one of his kidneys to our ailing mother. For this reason alone I will never forget him.

This one act of selflessness also told me how much Michael loved his family. His death also reminded me once again how important family and friends were to him. I received many phone calls from other relatives and many friends who heard the news and called me. These were friends who used to live in Mumias, Nairobi and other places who remember and loved him like family. I think this is an important reminder that no matter where in the world we are, no matter how busy in life we are, we should never forget our family or our friends. We should never lose touch of those we love.

And when we are away, we should always pray for them. So now I pray for my brother. I pray that he is at peace and now that this life has passed, he would truly find peace.

Next year, it will be 10 years since I last visited home. I plan come to attend my mother’s memorial service and also to pay my respects to my late brother. I plan to speak, not be via letter rather I plan to speak to you all in person. But despite my plans, The Lord may have other plans for me, if this is so, so be it but I pray its The Lord’s will that visit.

In closing, I really do believe in the bible as God’s word, therefore I shall end with a verse. This verse is from the first part of Romans Chapter 2, the first part of verse 7

“He will give everlasting life to those who search for glory, honor, and immortality by persisting in doing what is good…”

For those of us who are believers, we know that there is life beyond the grave, and we live our lives here preparing for that eventuality.

My God bless you all!

Bye, Bye, Dear Brother…

Yesterday morning, I found out that my younger brother passed away…

My biggest fear of his death is that he may not have been a born again Christian… I really don’t know what to say… yet, it reminds me that ultimately we don’t know when our time is up. The question then comes, am I prepared, spiritually, for when my time will come? I claim to be a born again Christian, but I don’t feel like I really do practice what I claim to be… maybe this too is my awakening…

He leaves behind a wife and two children…

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