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MySQL 5.5 Reference Manual  /  ...  /  Differences Between the NDB and InnoDB Storage Engines Differences Between the NDB and InnoDB Storage Engines

The NDB storage engine is implemented using a distributed, shared-nothing architecture, which causes it to behave differently from InnoDB in a number of ways. For those unaccustomed to working with NDB, unexpected behaviors can arise due to its distributed nature with regard to transactions, foreign keys, table limits, and other characteristics. These are shown in the following table:

Table 18.1 Feature differences between the InnoDB and NDB storage engines.

Feature InnoDB 1.1 NDB 7.2
MySQL Server Version 5.5 5.5
InnoDB Version InnoDB 1.1 InnoDB 1.1
NDB Cluster Version N/A NDB 7.2.39
Storage Limits 64TB 3TB (Practical upper limit based on 48 data nodes with 64GB RAM each; can be increased with disk-based data and BLOBs)
Foreign Keys Yes Available in NDB Cluster 7.3 and later (NDB 7.2 ignores them, as with MyISAM)
Transactions All standard types READ COMMITTED
Data Compression Yes No (NDB checkpoint and backup files can be compressed)
Large Row Support (> 14K) Supported for VARBINARY, VARCHAR, BLOB, and TEXT columns Supported for BLOB and TEXT columns only (Using these types to store very large amounts of data can lower NDB performance)
Replication Support Asynchronous and semisynchronous replication using MySQL Replication Automatic synchronous replication within an NDB Cluster; asynchronous replication between NDB Clusters, using MySQL Replication (Semisynchronous replication is not supported)
Scaleout for Read Operations Yes (MySQL Replication) Yes (Automatic partitioning in NDB Cluster; NDB Cluster Replication)
Scaleout for Write Operations Requires application-level partitioning (sharding) Yes (Automatic partitioning in NDB Cluster is transparent to applications)
High Availability (HA) Requires additional software Yes (Designed for 99.999% uptime)
Node Failure Recovery and Failover Requires additional software Automatic (Key element in NDB architecture)
Time for Node Failure Recovery 30 seconds or longer Typically < 1 second
Real-Time Performance No Yes
In-Memory Tables No Yes (Some data can optionally be stored on disk; both in-memory and disk data storage are durable)
NoSQL Access to Storage Engine Yes Yes (Multiple APIs, including Memcached, Node.js/JavaScript, Java, JPA, C++, and HTTP/REST)
Concurrent and Parallel Writes Not supported Up to 48 writers, optimized for concurrent writes
Conflict Detection and Resolution (Multiple Replication Masters) No Yes
Hash Indexes No Yes
Online Addition of Nodes Read-only replicas using MySQL Replication Yes (all node types)
Online Upgrades No Yes
Online Schema Modifications No Yes