Dealing with Schema Changes on Large Data Volumes

Tags: dba, schema
Average rating: ****.
(4.20, 5 ratings)

Schema changes are unavoidable in almost any environment. It is hard to imagine any major application change that does not have to change the database. While your database size is small enough this is not a problem. But when you data grows straightforward ALTER TABLE may take hours, which is not acceptable if application uptime is crusial.

This session will tell you about two different approaches to this problem. Using master-master setup to apply schema changes on standby machine will eliminate downtime but is not suitable for some kind of changes, like column renaming and column drop.
Using “shadow” tables in conjunction with a set of triggers to maintain data consistency will allow you to apply schema changes without taking database offline or failing over to standby server.

This session will focus on pros and cons of each approach and describe most common use cases for both.

Photo of Danil Zburivsky

Danil Zburivsky


Been working with different RDBMS since early years in the university. Acted as a database developer for an accounting system for Donetsk National University in Ukraine.

Got the taste for MySQL while working as a DBA for Sonopia Corp.

Currently helping people all over the world to solve problems with their MySQL systems at The Pythian Group. And helping people, is what I like to do the most :)

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Bob Wall
04/15/2011 6:36am PDT

Some good ideas, and good interaction with the audience.

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