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Posted by Mark Kozlowsky on January 15 2010 10:17am[Delete] [Edit]

I've been using MySQL 5.0.85-Community for a while now on Debian Linux. The MySQL package that is installed with Debian by default includes the InnoDB engine, but in most cases, you wouldn't need InnoDB and disabling the storage engine can save you a lot of memory optimizing your overall database performance when RAM size is a constraint.

For example on the host http://www.sytru.com I've been running using Debian 5.0 Lenny and MySQL 5.0.85-Community, the InnoDB engine took around 100MB of memory even at idle times. Wasting 100 of RAM on a feature that is not used at all would cause major slowdowns if your machine has little RAM installed. So, If you don't need the InnoDB engine enabled, it's recommended to turn it off, to free up some memory and get extra optimization on machines with low memory.

To disable to InnoDB storage engine edit your my.cnf configuration file (usually in /etc/mysql/) and add the following line to it:

skip-innodb

Save and close the file, restart your database server and you're done. You can also re-compile the package from scratch, removing the InnoDB storage engine completely, but I don't recommend this just in case you need to re-enable InnoDB for some reason in the future.