On Windows, you can run the server as a Windows service using a normal user account.
On Linux, for installations performed using a MySQL repository or
RPM packages, the MySQL server mysqld should be
started by the local
mysql operating system
user. Starting by another operating system user is not supported
by the init scripts that are included as part of the MySQL
On Unix (or Linux for installations performed using
tar.gz packages) , the MySQL server
mysqld can be started and run by any user.
However, you should avoid running the server as the Unix
root user for security reasons. To change
mysqld to run as a normal unprivileged Unix
user_name, you must do the
Stop the server if it is running (use mysqladmin shutdown).
Change the database directories and files so that
user_namehas privileges to read and write files in them (you might need to do this as the Unix
shell> chown -R user_name /path/to/mysql/datadir
If you do not do this, the server will not be able to access databases or tables when it runs as
If directories or files within the MySQL data directory are symbolic links,
chown -Rmight not follow symbolic links for you. If it does not, you will also need to follow those links and change the directories and files they point to.
Start the server as user
user_name. Another alternative is to start mysqld as the Unix
rootuser and use the
--user=option. mysqld starts up, then switches to run as the Unix user
user_namebefore accepting any connections.
To start the server as the given user automatically at system startup time, specify the user name by adding a
useroption to the
[mysqld]group of the
/etc/my.cnfoption file or the
my.cnfoption file in the server's data directory. For example:
If your Unix machine itself is not secured, you should assign
passwords to the MySQL
root account in the
grant tables. Otherwise, any user with a login account on that
machine can run the mysql client with a
--user=root option and perform any
operation. (It is a good idea to assign passwords to MySQL
accounts in any case, but especially so when other login accounts
exist on the server host.) See
Section 3.4, “Securing the Initial MySQL Account”.