The MySQL C API is a C-based API that client applications written in C can use to communicate with MySQL Server. Client programs refer to C API header files at compile time and link to a C API library file at link time. The library comes in two versions, depending on how the application is intended to communicate with the server:
libmysqlclient: The client version of the library, used for applications that communicate over a network connection as a client of a standalone server process.
libmysqld: The embedded server version of the library, used for applications intended to include an embedded MySQL server within the application itself. The application communicates with its own private server instance.
Both libraries have the same interface. In terms of C API calls,
an application communicates with a standalone server the same way
it communicates with an embedded server. A given client can be
built to communicate with a standalone or embedded server,
depending on whether it is linked against
at build time.
There are two ways to obtain the C API header and library files required to build C API client programs:
Install a MySQL Server distribution. Server distributions include both
Install a Connector/C distribution. Connector/C distributions include only
libmysqlclient. They do not include
For both MySQL Server and Connector/C, you can install a binary distribution that contains the C API files pre-built, or you can use a source distribution and build the C API files yourself.
Normally, you install either a MySQL Server distribution or a Connector/C distribution, but not both. For information about issues involved with simultaneous MySQL Server and Connector/C installations, see Section 23.8.2, “Simultaneous MySQL Server and Connector/C Installations”.
The names of the library files to use when linking C API client applications depend on the library type and platform for which a distribution is built:
On Unix (and Unix-like) systems, the static library is
libmysqlclient.a. The dynamic library is
libmysqlclient.soon most Unix systems and
libmysqlclient.dylibon OS X.
For distributions that include embedded server libraries, the corresponding library names begin with
On Windows, the static library is
mysqlclient.liband the dynamic library is
libmysql.dll. Windows distributions also include
libmysql.lib, a static import library needed for using the dynamic library.
For distributions that include embedded server libraries, the corresponding library names are
Windows distributions also include a set of debug libraries. These have the same names as the nondebug libraries, but are located in the
lib/debuglibrary. You must use the debug libraries when compiling clients built using the debug C runtime.
On Unix, you may also see libraries that include
_r in the names. Before MySQL 5.5, these were
built as thread-safe (re-entrant) libraries separately from the
_r libraries. As of 5.5, both libraries are
the same and the
_r names are symbolic links to
the corresponding non-
_r names. There is no
need to use the
_r libraries. For example, if
you use mysql_config to obtain linker flags,
you can use mysql_config --libs in all cases,
even for threaded clients. There is no need to use