Security in MySQL  /  Access Control and Account Management  /  Privileges Provided by MySQL

4.2 Privileges Provided by MySQL

The privileges granted to a MySQL account determine which operations the account can perform. MySQL privileges differ in the contexts in which they apply and at different levels of operation:

  • Administrative privileges enable users to manage operation of the MySQL server. These privileges are global because they are not specific to a particular database.

  • Database privileges apply to a database and to all objects within it. These privileges can be granted for specific databases, or globally so that they apply to all databases.

  • Privileges for database objects such as tables, indexes, views, and stored routines can be granted for specific objects within a database, for all objects of a given type within a database (for example, all tables in a database), or globally for all objects of a given type in all databases.

Privileges also differ in terms of whether they are static (built in to the server) or dynamic (defined at runtime). Whether a privilege is static or dynamic affects its availability to be granted to user accounts and roles. For information about the differences between static and dynamic privileges, see Static Versus Dynamic Privileges.)

Information about account privileges is stored in the grant tables in the mysql system database. For a description of the structure and contents of these tables, see Section 4.3, “Grant Tables”. The MySQL server reads the contents of the grant tables into memory when it starts, and reloads them under the circumstances indicated in Section 4.13, “When Privilege Changes Take Effect”. The server bases access-control decisions on the in-memory copies of the grant tables.

Important

Some MySQL releases introduce changes to the grant tables to add new privileges or features. To make sure that you can take advantage of any new capabilities, update your grant tables to the current structure whenever you upgrade MySQL. See Upgrading MySQL.

The following sections summarize the available privileges, provide more detailed descriptions of each privilege, and offer usage guidelines.

Summary of Available Privileges

The following table shows the static privilege names used in GRANT and REVOKE statements, along with the column name associated with each privilege in the grant tables and the context in which the privilege applies.

Table 4.1 Permissible Static Privileges for GRANT and REVOKE

Privilege Grant Table Column Context
ALL [PRIVILEGES] Synonym for all privileges Server administration
ALTER Alter_priv Tables
ALTER ROUTINE Alter_routine_priv Stored routines
CREATE Create_priv Databases, tables, or indexes
CREATE ROLE Create_role_priv Server administration
CREATE ROUTINE Create_routine_priv Stored routines
CREATE TABLESPACE Create_tablespace_priv Server administration
CREATE TEMPORARY TABLES Create_tmp_table_priv Tables
CREATE USER Create_user_priv Server administration
CREATE VIEW Create_view_priv Views
DELETE Delete_priv Tables
DROP Drop_priv Databases, tables, or views
DROP ROLE Drop_role_priv Server administration
EVENT Event_priv Databases
EXECUTE Execute_priv Stored routines
FILE File_priv File access on server host
GRANT OPTION Grant_priv Databases, tables, or stored routines
INDEX Index_priv Tables
INSERT Insert_priv Tables or columns
LOCK TABLES Lock_tables_priv Databases
PROCESS Process_priv Server administration
PROXY See proxies_priv table Server administration
REFERENCES References_priv Databases or tables
RELOAD Reload_priv Server administration
REPLICATION CLIENT Repl_client_priv Server administration
REPLICATION SLAVE Repl_slave_priv Server administration
SELECT Select_priv Tables or columns
SHOW DATABASES Show_db_priv Server administration
SHOW VIEW Show_view_priv Views
SHUTDOWN Shutdown_priv Server administration
SUPER Super_priv Server administration
TRIGGER Trigger_priv Tables
UPDATE Update_priv Tables or columns
USAGE Synonym for no privileges Server administration

The following table shows the dynamic privilege names used in GRANT and REVOKE statements, along with the context in which the privilege applies.

Table 4.2 Permissible Dynamic Privileges for GRANT and REVOKE

Privilege Context
APPLICATION_PASSWORD_ADMIN Dual password administration
AUDIT_ADMIN Audit log administration
BACKUP_ADMIN Backup administration
BINLOG_ADMIN Backup and Replication administration
BINLOG_ENCRYPTION_ADMIN Backup and Replication administration
CLONE_ADMIN Clone administration
CONNECTION_ADMIN Server administration
ENCRYPTION_KEY_ADMIN Server administration
FIREWALL_ADMIN Firewall administration
FIREWALL_USER Firewall administration
GROUP_REPLICATION_ADMIN Replication administration
INNODB_REDO_LOG_ARCHIVE Redo log archiving administration
NDB_STORED_USER NDB Cluster
PERSIST_RO_VARIABLES_ADMIN Server administration
REPLICATION_APPLIER PRIVILEGE_CHECKS_USER for a replication channel
REPLICATION_SLAVE_ADMIN Replication administration
RESOURCE_GROUP_ADMIN Resource group administration
RESOURCE_GROUP_USER Resource group administration
ROLE_ADMIN Server administration
SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN Server administration
SET_USER_ID Server administration
SYSTEM_USER Server administration
SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN Server administration
TABLE_ENCRYPTION_ADMIN Server administration
VERSION_TOKEN_ADMIN Server administration
XA_RECOVER_ADMIN Server administration

Static Privilege Descriptions

Static privileges are built in to the server, in contrast to dynamic privileges, which are defined at runtime. The following list describes each static privilege available in MySQL.

Particular SQL statements might have more specific privilege requirements than indicated here. If so, the description for the statement in question provides the details.

  • ALL, ALL PRIVILEGES

    These privilege specifiers are shorthand for all privileges available at a given privilege level (except GRANT OPTION). For example, granting ALL at the global or table level grants all global privileges or all table-level privileges, respectively.

  • ALTER

    Enables use of the ALTER TABLE statement to change the structure of tables. ALTER TABLE also requires the CREATE and INSERT privileges. Renaming a table requires ALTER and DROP on the old table, CREATE, and INSERT on the new table.

  • ALTER ROUTINE

    Enables use of statements that alter or drop stored routines (stored procedures and functions).

  • CREATE

    Enables use of statements that create new databases and tables.

  • CREATE ROLE

    Enables use of the CREATE ROLE statement. (The CREATE USER privilege also enables use of the CREATE ROLE statement.) See Section 4.10, “Using Roles”.

    The CREATE ROLE and DROP ROLE privileges are not as powerful as CREATE USER because they can be used only to create and drop accounts. They cannot be used as CREATE USER can be modify account attributes or rename accounts. See User and Role Interchangeability.

  • CREATE ROUTINE

    Enables use of statements that create stored routines (stored procedures and functions).

  • CREATE TABLESPACE

    Enables use of statements that create, alter, or drop tablespaces and log file groups.

  • CREATE TEMPORARY TABLES

    Enables the creation of temporary tables using the CREATE TEMPORARY TABLE statement.

    After a session has created a temporary table, the server performs no further privilege checks on the table. The creating session can perform any operation on the table, such as DROP TABLE, INSERT, UPDATE, or SELECT. For more information, see CREATE TEMPORARY TABLE Syntax.

  • CREATE USER

    Enables use of the ALTER USER, CREATE ROLE, CREATE USER, DROP ROLE, DROP USER, RENAME USER, and REVOKE ALL PRIVILEGES statements.

  • CREATE VIEW

    Enables use of the CREATE VIEW statement.

  • DELETE

    Enables rows to be deleted from tables in a database.

  • DROP

    Enables use of statements that drop (remove) existing databases, tables, and views. The DROP privilege is required to use the ALTER TABLE ... DROP PARTITION statement on a partitioned table. The DROP privilege is also required for TRUNCATE TABLE.

  • DROP ROLE

    Enables use of the DROP ROLE statement. (The CREATE USER privilege also enables use of the DROP ROLE statement.) See Section 4.10, “Using Roles”.

    The CREATE ROLE and DROP ROLE privileges are not as powerful as CREATE USER because they can be used only to create and drop accounts. They cannot be used as CREATE USER can be modify account attributes or rename accounts. See User and Role Interchangeability.

  • EVENT

    Enables use of statements that create, alter, drop, or display events for the Event Scheduler.

  • EXECUTE

    Enables use of statements that execute stored routines (stored procedures and functions).

  • FILE

    Affects the following operations and server behaviors:

    • Enables reading and writing files on the server host using the LOAD DATA and SELECT ... INTO OUTFILE statements and the LOAD_FILE() function. A user who has the FILE privilege can read any file on the server host that is either world-readable or readable by the MySQL server. (This implies the user can read any file in any database directory, because the server can access any of those files.)

    • Enables creating new files in any directory where the MySQL server has write access. This includes the server's data directory containing the files that implement the privilege tables.

    • Enables use of the DATA DIRECTORY or INDEX DIRECTORY table option for the CREATE TABLE statement.

    As a security measure, the server does not overwrite existing files.

    To limit the location in which files can be read and written, set the secure_file_priv system variable to a specific directory. See Server System Variables.

  • GRANT OPTION

    Enables you to grant to or revoke from other users those privileges that you yourself possess.

  • INDEX

    Enables use of statements that create or drop (remove) indexes. INDEX applies to existing tables. If you have the CREATE privilege for a table, you can include index definitions in the CREATE TABLE statement.

  • INSERT

    Enables rows to be inserted into tables in a database. INSERT is also required for the ANALYZE TABLE, OPTIMIZE TABLE, and REPAIR TABLE table-maintenance statements.

  • LOCK TABLES

    Enables use of explicit LOCK TABLES statements to lock tables for which you have the SELECT privilege. This includes use of write locks, which prevents other sessions from reading the locked table.

  • PROCESS

    Enables display of information about the threads executing within the server (that is, information about the statements being executed by sessions). The privilege enables use of SHOW PROCESSLIST or mysqladmin processlist to see threads belonging to other accounts; you can always see your own threads. The PROCESS privilege also enables use of SHOW ENGINE.

  • PROXY

    Enables one user to impersonate or become known as another user. See Section 4.18, “Proxy Users”.

  • REFERENCES

    Creation of a foreign key constraint requires the REFERENCES privilege for the parent table.

  • RELOAD

    Enables use of the FLUSH statement. It also enables mysqladmin commands that are equivalent to FLUSH operations: flush-hosts, flush-logs, flush-privileges, flush-status, flush-tables, flush-threads, refresh, and reload.

    The reload command tells the server to reload the grant tables into memory. flush-privileges is a synonym for reload. The refresh command closes and reopens the log files and flushes all tables. The other flush-xxx commands perform functions similar to refresh, but are more specific and may be preferable in some instances. For example, if you want to flush just the log files, flush-logs is a better choice than refresh.

    The RELOAD privilege also enables use of the RESET MASTER and RESET SLAVE statements.

  • REPLICATION CLIENT

    Enables use of the SHOW MASTER STATUS, SHOW SLAVE STATUS, and SHOW BINARY LOGS statements. Grant this privilege to accounts that are used by slave servers to connect to the current server as their master.

  • REPLICATION SLAVE

    Enables the account to request updates that have been made to databases on the master server, using the SHOW SLAVE HOSTS, SHOW RELAYLOG EVENTS, and SHOW BINLOG EVENTS statements. This privilege is also required to use the mysqlbinlog options --read-from-remote-server (-R) and --read-from-remote-master. Grant this privilege to accounts that are used by slave servers to connect to the current server as their master.

  • SELECT

    Enables rows to be selected from tables in a database. SELECT statements require the SELECT privilege only if they actually access tables. Some SELECT statements do not access tables and can be executed without permission for any database. For example, you can use SELECT as a simple calculator to evaluate expressions that make no reference to tables:

    SELECT 1+1;
    SELECT PI()*2;

    The SELECT privilege is also needed for other statements that read column values. For example, SELECT is needed for columns referenced on the right hand side of col_name=expr assignment in UPDATE statements or for columns named in the WHERE clause of DELETE or UPDATE statements.

    The SELECT privilege is needed for tables or views used with EXPLAIN, including any underlying tables in view definitions.

  • SHOW DATABASES

    Enables the account to see database names by issuing the SHOW DATABASE statement. Accounts that do not have this privilege see only databases for which they have some privileges, and cannot use the statement at all if the server was started with the --skip-show-database option.

    Caution

    Because any static global privilege is considered a privilege for all databases, any static global privilege enables a user to see all database names with SHOW DATABASES or by examining the SCHEMATA table of INFORMATION_SCHEMA, except databases that have been restricted at the database level by partial revokes.

  • SHOW VIEW

    Enables use of the SHOW CREATE VIEW statement. This privilege is also needed for views used with EXPLAIN.

  • SHUTDOWN

    Enables use of the SHUTDOWN and RESTART statements, the mysqladmin shutdown command, and the mysql_shutdown() C API function.

  • SUPER

    SUPER is a powerful and far-reaching privilege and should not be granted lightly. If an account needs to perform only a subset of SUPER operations, it may be possible to achieve the desired privilege set by instead granting one or more dynamic privileges, each of which confers more limited capabilities. See Dynamic Privilege Descriptions.

    Note

    SUPER is deprecated and will be removed in a future version of MySQL. See Migrating Accounts from SUPER to Dynamic Privileges.

    SUPER affects the following operations and server behaviors:

    • Enables system variable changes at runtime:

      See also System Variable Privileges.

    • Enables changes to global transaction characteristics (see SET TRANSACTION Syntax).

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN.

    • Enables the account to start and stop replication, including Group Replication.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is REPLICATION_SLAVE_ADMIN for regular replication, GROUP_REPLICATION_ADMIN for Group Replication.

    • Enables use of the CHANGE MASTER TO and CHANGE REPLICATION FILTER statements.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is REPLICATION_SLAVE_ADMIN.

    • Enables binary log control by means of the PURGE BINARY LOGS and BINLOG statements.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is BINLOG_ADMIN.

    • Enables setting the effective authorization ID when executing a view or stored program. A user with this privilege can specify any account in the DEFINER attribute of a view or stored program.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is SET_USER_ID.

    • Enables use of the CREATE SERVER, ALTER SERVER, and DROP SERVER statements.

    • Enables use of the mysqladmin debug command.

    • Enables InnoDB encryption key rotation.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is ENCRYPTION_KEY_ADMIN.

    • Enables execution of Version Tokens user-defined functions.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is VERSION_TOKEN_ADMIN.

    • Enables granting and revoking roles, use of the WITH ADMIN OPTION clause of the GRANT statement, and nonempty <graphml> element content in the result from the ROLES_GRAPHML() function.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege is ROLE_ADMIN.

    • Enables control over client connections not permitted to non-SUPER accounts:

      • Enables use of the KILL statement or mysqladmin kill command to kill threads belonging to other accounts. (An account can always kill its own threads.)

      • The server does not execute init_connect system variable content when SUPER clients connect.

      • The server accepts one connection from a SUPER client even if the connection limit configured by the max_connections system variable is reached.

      • A server in offline mode (offline_mode enabled) does not terminate SUPER client connections at the next client request, and accepts new connections from SUPER clients.

      • Updates can be performed even when the read_only system variable is enabled. This applies to explicit table updates, and to use of account-management statements such as GRANT and REVOKE that update tables implicitly.

      The corresponding dynamic privilege for the preceding connection-control operations is CONNECTION_ADMIN.

    You may also need the SUPER privilege to create or alter stored functions if binary logging is enabled, as described in Stored Program Binary Logging.

  • TRIGGER

    Enables trigger operations. You must have this privilege for a table to create, drop, execute, or display triggers for that table.

    When a trigger is activated (by a user who has privileges to execute INSERT, UPDATE, or DELETE statements for the table associated with the trigger), trigger execution requires that the user who defined the trigger still have the TRIGGER privilege for the table.

  • UPDATE

    Enables rows to be updated in tables in a database.

  • USAGE

    This privilege specifier stands for no privileges. It is used at the global level with GRANT to specify clauses such as WITH GRANT OPTION without naming specific account privileges in the privilege list. SHOW GRANTS displays USAGE to indicate that an account has no privileges at a privilege level.

Dynamic Privilege Descriptions

Dynamic privileges are defined at runtime, in contrast to static privileges, which are built in to the server. The following list describes each dynamic privilege available in MySQL.

Most dynamic privileges are defined at server startup. Others are defined by a particular server component or plugin, as indicated in the privilege descriptions. In such cases, the privilege is unavailable unless the component or plugin that defines it is enabled.

Particular SQL statements might have more specific privilege requirements than indicated here. If so, the description for the statement in question provides the details.

  • APPLICATION_PASSWORD_ADMIN (added in MySQL 8.0.14)

    For dual-password capability, this privilege enables use of the RETAIN CURRENT PASSWORD and DISCARD OLD PASSWORD clauses for ALTER USER and SET PASSWORD statements that apply to your own account. This privilege is required to manipulate your own secondary password because most users require only one password.

    If an account is to be permitted to manipulate secondary passwords for all accounts, it should be granted the CREATE USER privilege rather than APPLICATION_PASSWORD_ADMIN.

    For more information about use of dual passwords, see Section 4.15, “Password Management”.

  • AUDIT_ADMIN

    Enables audit log configuration. This privilege is defined by the audit_log plugin; see Section 6.5, “MySQL Enterprise Audit”.

  • BACKUP_ADMIN

    Enables execution of the LOCK INSTANCE FOR BACKUP statement and access to the Performance Schema log_status table.

    Note

    Besides BACKUP_ADMIN, the SELECT privilege on the log_status table is also needed for its access.

    The BACKUP_ADMIN privilege is automatically granted to users with the RELOAD privilege when performing an in-place upgrade to MySQL 8.0 from an earlier version.

  • BINLOG_ADMIN

    Enables binary log control by means of the PURGE BINARY LOGS and BINLOG statements.

  • BINLOG_ENCRYPTION_ADMIN

    Enables setting the system variable binlog_encryption, which activates or deactivates encryption for binary log files and relay log files. This ability is not provided by the BINLOG_ADMIN, SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN, or SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN privileges. The related system variable binlog_rotate_encryption_master_key_at_startup, which rotates the binary log master key automatically when the server is restarted, does not require this privilege.

  • CLONE_ADMIN

    Enables execution of the CLONE statements. Includes BACKUP_ADMIN and SHUTDOWN privileges.

  • CONNECTION_ADMIN

    Enables use of the KILL statement or mysqladmin kill command to kill threads belonging to other accounts. (An account can always kill its own threads.)

    Enables setting system variables related to client connections, or circumventing restrictions related to client connections. CONNECTION_ADMIN applies to the effects of these system variables:

  • ENCRYPTION_KEY_ADMIN

    Enables InnoDB encryption key rotation.

  • FIREWALL_ADMIN

    Enables a user to administer firewall rules for any user. This privilege is defined by the MYSQL_FIREWALL plugin; see Section 6.7, “MySQL Enterprise Firewall”.

  • FIREWALL_USER

    Enables users to update their own firewall rules. This privilege is defined by the MYSQL_FIREWALL plugin; see Section 6.7, “MySQL Enterprise Firewall”.

  • GROUP_REPLICATION_ADMIN

    Enables the account to start and stop Group Replication using the START GROUP REPLICATION and STOP GROUP REPLICATION statements, to change the global setting for the group_replication_consistency system variable, and to use the group_replication_set_write_concurrency() and group_replication_set_communication_protocol() UDFs. Grant this privilege to accounts that are used to administer servers that are members of a replication group.

  • INNODB_REDO_LOG_ARCHIVE

    Enables the account to activate and deactivate redo log archiving.

  • NDB_STORED_USER

    Enables the user or role and its privileges to be shared and synchronized between all NDB-enabled MySQL servers as soon as they join a given NDB Cluster. This privilege is available only if the NDB storage engine is enabled.

    Any changes to or revocations of privileges made for the given user or role are synchronized immediately with all connected MySQL servers (SQL nodes). You should be aware that there is no guarantee that multiple statements affecting privileges originating from different SQL nodes are executed on all SQL nodes in the same order. For this reason, it is highly recommended that all user administration be done from a single designated SQL node.

    NDB_STORED_USER is a global privilege and must be granted or revoked using ON *.*. Trying to set any other scope for this privilege results in an error. This privilege can be given to most application and administrative users, but it cannot be granted to system reserved accounts such as mysql.session@localhost or mysql.infoschema@localhost.

    A user that has been granted the NDB_STORED_USER privilege is stored in NDB (and thus shared by all SQL nodes), as is a role with this privilege. A user that is merely granted a role that has NDB_STORED_USER is not stored in NDB; each NDB stored user must be granted the privilege explicitly.

    For more detailed information about how this works in NDB, see Distributed MySQL Privileges with NDB_STORED_USER.

    The NDB_STORED_USER privilege is available beginning with NDB 8.0.18.

  • PERSIST_RO_VARIABLES_ADMIN

    For users who also have SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN, PERSIST_RO_VARIABLES_ADMIN enables use of SET PERSIST_ONLY to persist global system variables to the mysqld-auto.cnf option file in the data directory. This statement is similar to SET PERSIST but does not modify the runtime global system variable value. This makes SET PERSIST_ONLY suitable for configuring read-only system variables that can be set only at server startup.

    See also System Variable Privileges.

  • REPLICATION_APPLIER

    Enables the account to act as the PRIVILEGE_CHECKS_USER for a replication channel, and to execute BINLOG statements in mysqlbinlog output. Grant this privilege to accounts that are assigned using CHANGE MASTER TO to provide a security context for replication channels, and to handle replication errors on those channels. As well as the REPLICATION_APPLIER privilege, you must also give the account the required privileges to execute the transactions received by the replication channel or contained in the mysqlbinlog output, for example to update the affected tables. For more information, see Replication Privilege Checks.

  • REPLICATION_SLAVE_ADMIN

    Enables the account to connect to the master server, start and stop replication using the START SLAVE and STOP SLAVE statements, and use the CHANGE MASTER TO and CHANGE REPLICATION FILTER statements. Grant this privilege to accounts that are used by slave servers to connect to the current server as their master. This privilege does not apply to Group Replication; use GROUP_REPLICATION_ADMIN for that.

  • RESOURCE_GROUP_ADMIN

    Enables resource group management, consisting of creating, altering, and dropping resource groups, and assignment of threads and statements to resource groups. A user with this privilege can perform any operation relating to resource groups.

  • RESOURCE_GROUP_USER

    Enables assigning threads and statements to resource groups. A user with this privilege can use the SET RESOURCE GROUP statement and the RESOURCE_GROUP optimizer hint.

  • ROLE_ADMIN

    Enables granting and revoking roles, use of the WITH ADMIN OPTION clause of the GRANT statement, and nonempty <graphml> element content in the result from the ROLES_GRAPHML() function. Required to set the value of the mandatory_roles system variable.

  • SERVICE_CONNECTION_ADMIN

    Enables connections to the network interface that permits only administrative connections (see How MySQL Handles Client Connections).

  • SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN (added in MySQL 8.0.14)

    For most system variables, setting the session value requires no special privileges and can be done by any user to affect the current session. For some system variables, setting the session value can have effects outside the current session and thus is a restricted operation. For these, the SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN privilege enables the user to set the session value.

    If a system variable is restricted and requires a special privilege to set the session value, the variable description indicates that restriction. Examples include binlog_format, sql_log_bin, and sql_log_off.

    Prior to MySQL 8.0.14 when SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN was added, restricted session system variables can be set only by users who have the SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN or SUPER privilege.

    The SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN privilege is a subset of the SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN and SUPER privileges. A user who has either of those privileges is also permitted to set restricted session variables and effectively has SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN by implication and need not be granted SESSION_VARIABLES_ADMIN explicitly.

    See also System Variable Privileges.

  • SET_USER_ID

    Enables setting the effective authorization ID when executing a view or stored program. A user with this privilege can specify any account in the DEFINER attribute of a view or stored program.

  • SYSTEM_USER (added in MySQL 8.0.16)

    The SYSTEM_USER privilege distinguishes system users from regular users:

    • A user with the SYSTEM_USER privilege is a system user.

    • A user without the SYSTEM_USER privilege is a regular user.

    The SYSTEM_USER privilege has an effect on the accounts to which a given user can apply its other privileges, as well as whether the user is protected from other accounts:

    • A system user can modify both system and regular accounts. That is, a user who has the appropriate privileges to perform a given operation on regular accounts is enabled by possession of SYSTEM_USER to also perform the operation on system accounts. A system account can be modified only by system users with appropriate privileges, not by regular users.

    • A regular user with appropriate privileges can modify regular accounts, but not system accounts. A regular account can be modified by both system and regular users with appropriate privileges.

    For more information, see Section 4.11, “Account Categories”.

    The protection against modification by regular accounts that is afforded to system accounts by the SYSTEM_USER privilege does not apply to regular accounts that have privileges on the mysql system schema and thus can directly modify the grant tables in that schema. For full protection, do not grant mysql schema privileges to regular accounts. See Protecting System Accounts Against Manipulation by Regular Accounts.

  • SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN

    Affects the following operations and server behaviors:

  • TABLE_ENCRYPTION_ADMIN (added in MySQL 8.0.16)

    Enables a user to override default encryption settings when table_encryption_privilege_check is enabled; see Defining an Encryption Default for Schemas and General Tablespaces.

  • VERSION_TOKEN_ADMIN

    Enables execution of Version Tokens user-defined functions. This privilege is defined by the version_tokens plugin; see Version Tokens.

  • XA_RECOVER_ADMIN

    Enables execution of the XA RECOVER statement; see XA Transaction SQL Syntax.

    Prior to MySQL 8.0, any user could execute the XA RECOVER statement to discover the XID values for outstanding prepared XA transactions, possibly leading to commit or rollback of an XA transaction by a user other than the one who started it. In MySQL 8.0, XA RECOVER is permitted only to users who have the XA_RECOVER_ADMIN privilege, which is expected to be granted only to administrative users who have need for it. This might be the case, for example, for administrators of an XA application if it has crashed and it is necessary to find outstanding transactions started by the application so they can be rolled back. This privilege requirement prevents users from discovering the XID values for outstanding prepared XA transactions other than their own. It does not affect normal commit or rollback of an XA transaction because the user who started it knows its XID.

Privilege-Granting Guidelines

It is a good idea to grant to an account only those privileges that it needs. You should exercise particular caution in granting the FILE and administrative privileges:

  • FILE can be abused to read into a database table any files that the MySQL server can read on the server host. This includes all world-readable files and files in the server's data directory. The table can then be accessed using SELECT to transfer its contents to the client host.

  • GRANT OPTION enables users to give their privileges to other users. Two users that have different privileges and with the GRANT OPTION privilege are able to combine privileges.

  • ALTER may be used to subvert the privilege system by renaming tables.

  • SHUTDOWN can be abused to deny service to other users entirely by terminating the server.

  • PROCESS can be used to view the plain text of currently executing statements, including statements that set or change passwords.

  • SUPER can be used to terminate other sessions or change how the server operates.

  • Privileges granted for the mysql system database itself can be used to change passwords and other access privilege information:

    • Passwords are stored encrypted, so a malicious user cannot simply read them to know the plain text password. However, a user with write access to the mysql.user system table authentication_string column can change an account's password, and then connect to the MySQL server using that account.

    • INSERT or UPDATE granted for the mysql system database enable a user to add privileges or modify existing privileges, respectively.

    • DROP for the mysql system database enables a user to remote privilege tables, or even the database itself.

Static Versus Dynamic Privileges

MySQL supports static and dynamic privileges:

  • Static privileges are built in to the server. They are always available to be granted to user accounts and cannot be unregistered.

  • Dynamic privileges can be registered and unregistered at runtime. This affects their availability: A dynamic privilege that has not been registered cannot be granted.

For example, the SELECT and INSERT privileges are static and always available, whereas a dynamic privilege becomes available only if the server component that implements it has been enabled.

The remainder of this section describes how dynamic privileges work in MySQL. The discussion uses the term components but applies equally to plugins.

Note

Server administrators should be aware of which server components define dynamic privileges. For MySQL distributions, documentation of components that define dynamic privileges describes those privileges.

Third-party components may also define dynamic privileges; an administrator should understand those privileges and not install components that might conflict or compromise server operation. For example, one component conflicts with another if both define a privilege with the same name. Component developers can reduce the likelihood of this occurrence by choosing privilege names having a prefix based on the component name.

The server maintains the set of registered dynamic privileges internally in memory. Unregistration occurs at server shutdown.

Normally, a server component that defines dynamic privileges registers them when it is installed, during its initialization sequence. When uninstalled, a server component does not unregister its registered dynamic privileges. (This is current practice, not a requirement. That is, components could, but do not, unregister at any time privileges they register.)

No warning or error occurs for attempts to register an already registered dynamic privilege. Consider the following sequence of statements:

INSTALL COMPONENT 'my_component';
UNINSTALL COMPONENT 'my_component';
INSTALL COMPONENT 'my_component';

The first INSTALL COMPONENT statement registers any privileges defined by server component my_component, but UNINSTALL COMPONENT does not unregister them. For the second INSTALL COMPONENT statement, the component privileges it registers are found to be already registered, but no warnings or errors occur.

Dynamic privileges apply only at the global level. The server stores information about current assignments of dynamic privileges to user accounts in the mysql.global_grants system table:

  • The server automatically registers privileges named in global_grants during server startup (unless the --skip-grant-tables option is given).

  • The GRANT and REVOKE statements modify the contents of global_grants.

  • Dynamic privilege assignments listed in global_grants are persistent. They are not removed at server shutdown.

Example: The following statement grants to user u1 the privileges required to control replication (including Group Replication) on a slave server, and to modify system variables:

GRANT REPLICATION_SLAVE_ADMIN, GROUP_REPLICATION_ADMIN, BINLOG_ADMIN
ON *.* TO 'u1'@'localhost';

Granted dynamic privileges appear in the output from the SHOW GRANTS statement and the INFORMATION_SCHEMA USER_PRIVILEGES table.

For GRANT and REVOKE at the global level, any named privileges not recognized as static are checked against the current set of registered dynamic privileges and granted if found. Otherwise, an error occurs to indicate an unknown privilege identifier.

For GRANT and REVOKE the meaning of ALL [PRIVILEGES] at the global level includes all static global privileges, as well as all currently registered dynamic privileges:

  • GRANT ALL at the global level grants all static global privileges and all currently registered dynamic privileges. A dynamic privilege registered subsequent to execution of the GRANT statement is not granted retroactively to any account.

  • REVOKE ALL at the global level revokes all granted static global privileges and all granted dynamic privileges.

The FLUSH PRIVILEGES statement reads the global_grants table for dynamic privilege assignments and registers any unregistered privileges found there.

For descriptions of the dynamic privileges provided by MySQL Server and server components included in MySQL distributions, see Section 4.2, “Privileges Provided by MySQL”.

Migrating Accounts from SUPER to Dynamic Privileges

In MySQL 8.0, many operations that previously required the SUPER privilege are also associated with a dynamic privilege of more limited scope. (For descriptions of these privileges, see Section 4.2, “Privileges Provided by MySQL”.) Each such operation can be permitted to an account by granting the associated dynamic privilege rather than SUPER. This change improves security by enabling DBAs to avoid granting SUPER and tailor user privileges more closely to the operations permitted. SUPER is now deprecated and will be removed in a future version of MySQL.

When removal of SUPER occurs, operations that formerly required SUPER will fail unless accounts granted SUPER are migrated to the appropriate dynamic privileges. Use the following instructions to accomplish that goal so that accounts are ready prior to SUPER removal:

  1. Execute this query to identify accounts that are granted SUPER:

    SELECT GRANTEE FROM INFORMATION_SCHEMA.USER_PRIVILEGES
    WHERE PRIVILEGE_TYPE = 'SUPER';
  2. For each account identified by the preceding query, determine the operations for which it needs SUPER. Then grant the dynamic privileges corresponding to those operations, and revoke SUPER.

    For example, if 'u1'@'localhost' requires SUPER for binary log purging and system variable modification, these statements make the required changes to the account:

    GRANT BINLOG_ADMIN, SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN ON *.* TO 'u1'@'localhost';
    REVOKE SUPER ON *.* FROM 'u1'@'localhost';

    After you have modified all applicable accounts, the INFORMATION_SCHEMA query in the first step should produce an empty result set.