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MySQL Cookbook

Cookbook Version Build Status OpenCollective OpenCollective License

The MySQL Cookbook is a library cookbook that provides resource primitives (LWRPs) for use in recipes. It is designed to be a reference example for creating highly reusable cross-platform cookbooks.


This cookbook is concerned with the "MySQL Community Server", particularly those shipped with F/OSS Unix and Linux distributions. It does not address forks or value-added repackaged MySQL distributions like MariaDB or Percona.


This cookbook is maintained by the Sous Chefs. The Sous Chefs are a community of Chef cookbook maintainers working together to maintain important cookbooks. If you’d like to know more please visit or come chat with us on the Chef Community Slack in #sous-chefs.


  • Chef 15.5 or higher
  • Network accessible package repositories
  • 'recipe[selinux::disabled]' on RHEL platforms

Platform Support

The following platforms have been tested with Test Kitchen:

OS 5.6 5.7 8.0
centos-7 X X X
centos-8 X X
debian-9 X
debian-10 X
fedora X X X
openSUSE Leap X
ubuntu-18.04 X
ubuntu-20.04 X
ubuntu-22.04 X

Cookbook Dependencies

There are no hard coupled dependencies. However, there is a loose dependency on yum-mysql-community for RHEL/CentOS platforms. As of the 8.0 version of this cookbook, configuration of the package repos is now the responsibility of the user.


Place a dependency on the mysql cookbook in your cookbook's metadata.rb

depends 'mysql'

Then, in a recipe:

mysql_service 'foo' do
  port '3306'
  version '8.0'
  initial_root_password 'change me'
  action [:create, :start]

The service name on the OS is mysql-foo. You can manually start and stop it with service mysql-foo start and service mysql-foo stop.

If you use default as the name the service name will be mysql instead of mysql-default.

The configuration file is at /etc/mysql-foo/my.cnf. It contains the minimum options to get the service running. It looks like this.

# Chef generated my.cnf for instance mysql-foo

default-character-set          = utf8
port                           = 3306
socket                         = /var/run/mysql-foo/mysqld.sock

default-character-set          = utf8

user                           = mysql
pid-file                       = /var/run/mysql-foo/
socket                         = /var/run/mysql-foo/mysqld.sock
port                           = 3306
datadir                        = /var/lib/mysql-foo
tmpdir                         = /tmp
log-error                      = /var/log/mysql-foo/error.log
!includedir /etc/mysql-foo/conf.d

socket                         = /var/run/mysql-foo/mysqld.sock

You can put extra configuration into the conf.d directory by using the mysql_config resource, like this:

mysql_service 'foo' do
  port '3306'
  version '8.0'
  initial_root_password 'change me'
  action [:create, :start]

mysql_config 'foo' do
  source 'my_extra_settings.erb'
  instance 'foo'
  notifies :restart, 'mysql_service[foo]'
  action :create

You are responsible for providing my_extra_settings.erb in your own cookbook's templates folder. The name of the mysql service instance must be provided in mysql config as this defaults to 'default'.

Connecting with the mysql CLI command

Logging into the machine and typing mysql with no extra arguments will fail. You need to explicitly connect over the socket with mysql -S /var/run/mysql-foo/mysqld.sock, or over the network with mysql -h

Upgrading from older version of the mysql cookbook

  • It is strongly recommended that you rebuild the machine from scratch. This is easy if you have your data_dir on a dedicated mount point. If you must upgrade in-place, follow the instructions below.
  • The 6.x series supports multiple service instances on a single machine. It dynamically names the support directories and service names. /etc/mysql becomes /etc/mysql-instance_name. Other support directories in /var /run etc work the same way. Make sure to specify the data_dir property on the mysql_service resource to point to the old /var/lib/mysql directory.


Advanced Usage Examples

There are a number of configuration scenarios supported by the use of resource primitives in recipes. For example, you might want to run multiple MySQL services, as different users, and mount block devices that contain pre-existing databases.

Multiple Instances as Different Users

# instance-1
user 'alice' do
  action :create

directory '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-1' do
  owner 'alice'
  action :create

mount '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-1' do
  device '/dev/sdb1'
  fstype 'ext4'
  action [:mount, :enable]

mysql_service 'instance-1' do
  port '3307'
  run_user 'alice'
  data_dir '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-1'
  action [:create, :start]

mysql_config 'site config for instance-1' do
  instance 'instance-1'
  source 'instance-1.cnf.erb'
  notifies :restart, 'mysql_service[instance-1]'

# instance-2
user 'bob' do
  action :create

directory '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-2' do
  owner 'bob'
  action :create

mount '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-2' do
  device '/dev/sdc1'
  fstype 'ext3'
  action [:mount, :enable]

mysql_service 'instance-2' do
  port '3308'
  run_user 'bob'
  data_dir '/mnt/data/mysql/instance-2'
  action [:create, :start]

mysql_config 'site config for instance-2' do
  instance 'instance-2'
  source 'instance-2.cnf.erb'
  notifies :restart, 'mysql_service[instance-2]'

Replication Testing

Use multiple mysql_service instances to test a replication setup. This particular example serves as a smoke test in Test Kitchen because it exercises different resources and requires service restarts.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I run this behind my firewall

On Linux, the mysql_service resource uses the platform's underlying package manager to install software. For this to work behind firewalls, you'll need to either:

  • Configure the system yum/apt utilities to use a proxy server that
  • can reach the Internet
  • Host a package repository on a network that the machine can talk to

On the RHEL platform_family, applying the yum::default recipe will allow you to drive the yum_globalconfig resource with attributes to change the global yum proxy settings.

If hosting repository mirrors, applying one of the following recipes and adjust the settings with node attributes.

The mysql command line doesn't work

If you log into the machine and type mysql, you may see an error like this one:

Can't connect to local MySQL server through socket '/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock'

This is because MySQL is hardcoded to read the defined default my.cnf file, typically at /etc/my.cnf, and this LWRP deletes it to prevent overlap among multiple MySQL configurations.

To connect to the socket from the command line, check the socket in the relevant my.cnf file and use something like this:

mysql -S /var/run/mysql-foo/mysqld.sock -Pwhatever

Or to connect over the network, use something like this: connect over the network..

mysql -h -Pwhatever

These network or socket ssettings can also be put in you $HOME/.my.cnf, if preferred.

What about MariaDB, Percona, etc

MySQL forks are purposefully out of scope for this cookbook. This is mostly to reduce the testing matrix to a manageable size. Cookbooks for these technologies can easily be created by copying and adapting this cookbook. However, there will be differences.

Package repository locations, package version names, software major version numbers, supported platform matrices, and the availability of software such as XtraDB and Galera are the main reasons that creating multiple cookbooks to make sense.

There are existing cookbooks to carter for these forks, check them out on the supermarket


This project exists thanks to all the people who contribute.


Thank you to all our backers!


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