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MySQL Installation Guide  /  Installing MySQL on macOS  /  Installing a MySQL Launch Daemon

6.3 Installing a MySQL Launch Daemon

macOS uses launch daemons to automatically start, stop, and manage processes and applications such as MySQL.

By default, the installation package (DMG) on macOS installs a launchd file named /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.oracle.oss.mysql.mysqld.plist that contains a plist definition similar to:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
<dict>
    <key>Label</key>             <string>com.oracle.oss.mysql.mysqld</string>
    <key>ProcessType</key>       <string>Interactive</string>
    <key>Disabled</key>          <false/>
    <key>RunAtLoad</key>         <true/>
    <key>KeepAlive</key>         <true/>
    <key>SessionCreate</key>     <true/>
    <key>LaunchOnlyOnce</key>    <false/>
    <key>UserName</key>          <string>_mysql</string>
    <key>GroupName</key>         <string>_mysql</string>
    <key>ExitTimeOut</key>       <integer>600</integer>
    <key>Program</key>           <string>/usr/local/mysql/bin/mysqld</string>
    <key>ProgramArguments</key>
        <array>
            <string>/usr/local/mysql/bin/mysqld</string>
            <string>--user=_mysql</string>
            <string>--basedir=/usr/local/mysql</string>
            <string>--datadir=/usr/local/mysql/data</string>
            <string>--plugin-dir=/usr/local/mysql/lib/plugin</string>
            <string>--log-error=/usr/local/mysql/data/mysqld.local.err</string>
            <string>--pid-file=/usr/local/mysql/data/mysqld.local.pid</string>
        </array>
    <key>WorkingDirectory</key>  <string>/usr/local/mysql</string>
</dict>
</plist>
Note

Some users report that adding a plist DOCTYPE declaration causes the launchd operation to fail, despite it passing the lint check. We suspect it's a copy-n-paste error. The md5 checksum of a file containing the above snippet is 24710a27dc7a28fb7ee6d825129cd3cf.

To enable the launchd service, you can either:

  • Click Start MySQL Server from the MySQL preference pane.

    Figure 6.7 MySQL Preference Pane: Location

    Content is described in the surrounding text.

    Figure 6.8 MySQL Preference Pane: Usage

    Content is described in the surrounding text.

  • Or, manually load the launchd file.

    shell> cd /Library/LaunchDaemons
    shell> sudo launchctl load -F com.oracle.oss.mysql.mysqld.plist
  • To configure MySQL to automatically start at bootup, you can:

    shell> sudo launchctl load -w com.oracle.oss.mysql.mysqld.plist
Note

When upgrading MySQL server, the launchd installation process will remove the old startup items that were installed with MySQL server 5.7.7 and below.

Also, upgrading will replace your existing launchd file of the same name.

Additional launchd related information:

  • The plist entries override my.cnf entries, because they are passed in as command line arguments. For additional information about passing in program options, see Specifying Program Options.

  • The ProgramArguments section defines the command line options that are passed into the program, which is the mysqld binary in this case.

  • The default plist definition is written with less sophisticated use cases in mind. For more complicated setups, you may want to remove some of the arguments and instead rely on a MySQL configuration file, such as my.cnf.

  • If you edit the plist file, then uncheck the installer option when reinstalling or upgrading MySQL. Otherwise, your edited plist file will be overwritten, and all edits will be lost.

Because the default plist definition defines several ProgramArguments, you might remove most of these arguments and instead rely upon your my.cnf MySQL configuration file to define them. For example:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
<dict>
    <key>Label</key>             <string>com.oracle.oss.mysql.mysqld</string>
    <key>ProcessType</key>       <string>Interactive</string>
    <key>Disabled</key>          <false/>
    <key>RunAtLoad</key>         <true/>
    <key>KeepAlive</key>         <true/>
    <key>SessionCreate</key>     <true/>
    <key>LaunchOnlyOnce</key>    <false/>
    <key>UserName</key>          <string>_mysql</string>
    <key>GroupName</key>         <string>_mysql</string>
    <key>ExitTimeOut</key>       <integer>600</integer>
    <key>Program</key>           <string>/usr/local/mysql/bin/mysqld</string>
    <key>WorkingDirectory</key>  <string>/usr/local/mysql</string>
    <key>ProgramArguments</key>
        <array>
            <string>/usr/local/mysql/bin/mysqld</string>
            <string>--user=_mysql</string>
        </array>
</dict>
</plist>

In this case, the basedir, datadir, plugin_dir, log_error, and pid_file options were removed from the plist definition, and then you you might define them in my.cnf.