MySQL 5.1 Reference Manual  /  Installing and Upgrading MySQL  /  Installing MySQL on Microsoft Windows

2.3 Installing MySQL on Microsoft Windows


The MySQL server 5.1 branch is old and not recommended for new installations. Consider installing the latest stable branch, which today is MySQL server 5.7.

MySQL is available for Microsoft Windows, for both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. For supported Windows platform information, see

It is possible to run MySQL as a standard application or as a Windows service. By using a service, you can monitor and control the operation of the server through the standard Windows service management tools. For more information, see Section, “Starting MySQL Server as a Microsoft Windows Service”.

Generally, you should install MySQL on Windows using an account that has administrator rights. Otherwise, you may encounter problems with certain operations such as editing the PATH environment variable or accessing the Service Control Manager. Once installed, MySQL does not need to be executed using a user with Administrator privileges.

For a list of limitations on the use of MySQL on the Windows platform, see Section C.7.6, “Windows Platform Limitations”.

In addition to the MySQL Server package, you may need or want additional components to use MySQL with your application or development environment. These include, but are not limited to:

  • To connect to the MySQL server using ODBC, you must have a Connector/ODBC driver. For more information, including installation and configuration instructions, see MySQL Connector/ODBC Developer Guide.

  • To use MySQL server with .NET applications, you must have the Connector/Net driver. For more information, including installation and configuration instructions, see MySQL Connector/Net Developer Guide.

MySQL distributions for Windows can be downloaded from See Section 2.1.2, “How to Get MySQL”.

MySQL for Windows is available in several distribution formats, detailed here. Generally speaking, you should use a binary distribution that includes an installer. It is simpler to use than the others, and you need no additional tools to get MySQL up and running. The installer for the Windows version of MySQL, combined with a GUI Config Wizard, automatically installs MySQL, creates an option file, starts the server, and secures the default user accounts.

MySQL on Windows considerations:

  • Large Table Support

    If you need tables with a size larger than 4GB, install MySQL on an NTFS or newer file system. Do not forget to use MAX_ROWS and AVG_ROW_LENGTH when you create tables. See Section 13.1.17, “CREATE TABLE Syntax”.

  • MySQL and Virus Checking Software

    Virus-scanning software such as Norton/Symantec Anti-Virus on directories containing MySQL data and temporary tables can cause issues, both in terms of the performance of MySQL and the virus-scanning software misidentifying the contents of the files as containing spam. This is due to the fingerprinting mechanism used by the virus-scanning software, and the way in which MySQL rapidly updates different files, which may be identified as a potential security risk.

    After installing MySQL Server, it is recommended that you disable virus scanning on the main directory (datadir) used to store your MySQL table data. There is usually a system built into the virus-scanning software to enable specific directories to be ignored.

    In addition, by default, MySQL creates temporary files in the standard Windows temporary directory. To prevent the temporary files also being scanned, configure a separate temporary directory for MySQL temporary files and add this directory to the virus scanning exclusion list. To do this, add a configuration option for the tmpdir parameter to your my.ini configuration file. For more information, see Section, “Creating an Option File”.

Download this Manual
User Comments
Sign Up Login You must be logged in to post a comment.