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MySQL 8.0 Reference Manual  /  ...  /  mysqldump — A Database Backup Program

4.5.4 mysqldump — A Database Backup Program

The mysqldump client utility performs logical backups, producing a set of SQL statements that can be executed to reproduce the original database object definitions and table data. It dumps one or more MySQL databases for backup or transfer to another SQL server. The mysqldump command can also generate output in CSV, other delimited text, or XML format.

mysqldump requires at least the SELECT privilege for dumped tables, SHOW VIEW for dumped views, TRIGGER for dumped triggers, and LOCK TABLES if the --single-transaction option is not used. Certain options might require other privileges as noted in the option descriptions.

To reload a dump file, you must have the privileges required to execute the statements that it contains, such as the appropriate CREATE privileges for objects created by those statements.

mysqldump output can include ALTER DATABASE statements that change the database collation. These may be used when dumping stored programs to preserve their character encodings. To reload a dump file containing such statements, the ALTER privilege for the affected database is required.


A dump made using PowerShell on Windows with output redirection creates a file that has UTF-16 encoding:

shell> mysqldump [options] > dump.sql

However, UTF-16 is not permitted as a connection character set (see Impermissible Client Character Sets), so the dump file will not load correctly. To work around this issue, use the --result-file option, which creates the output in ASCII format:

shell> mysqldump [options] --result-file=dump.sql

Performance and Scalability Considerations

mysqldump advantages include the convenience and flexibility of viewing or even editing the output before restoring. You can clone databases for development and DBA work, or produce slight variations of an existing database for testing. It is not intended as a fast or scalable solution for backing up substantial amounts of data. With large data sizes, even if the backup step takes a reasonable time, restoring the data can be very slow because replaying the SQL statements involves disk I/O for insertion, index creation, and so on.

For large-scale backup and restore, a physical backup is more appropriate, to copy the data files in their original format that can be restored quickly:

  • If your tables are primarily InnoDB tables, or if you have a mix of InnoDB and MyISAM tables, consider using the mysqlbackup command of the MySQL Enterprise Backup product. (Available as part of the Enterprise subscription.) It provides the best performance for InnoDB backups with minimal disruption; it can also back up tables from MyISAM and other storage engines; and it provides a number of convenient options to accommodate different backup scenarios. See Section 30.2, “MySQL Enterprise Backup Overview”.

mysqldump can retrieve and dump table contents row by row, or it can retrieve the entire content from a table and buffer it in memory before dumping it. Buffering in memory can be a problem if you are dumping large tables. To dump tables row by row, use the --quick option (or --opt, which enables --quick). The --opt option (and hence --quick) is enabled by default, so to enable memory buffering, use --skip-quick.

If you are using a recent version of mysqldump to generate a dump to be reloaded into a very old MySQL server, use the --skip-opt option instead of the --opt or --extended-insert option.

For additional information about mysqldump, see Section 7.4, “Using mysqldump for Backups”.

Invocation Syntax

There are in general three ways to use mysqldump—in order to dump a set of one or more tables, a set of one or more complete databases, or an entire MySQL server—as shown here:

shell> mysqldump [options] db_name [tbl_name ...]
shell> mysqldump [options] --databases db_name ...
shell> mysqldump [options] --all-databases

To dump entire databases, do not name any tables following db_name, or use the --databases or --all-databases option.

To see a list of the options your version of mysqldump supports, issue the command mysqldump --help.

Option Syntax - Alphabetical Summary

mysqldump supports the following options, which can be specified on the command line or in the [mysqldump] and [client] groups of an option file. For information about option files used by MySQL programs, see Section 4.2.7, “Using Option Files”.

Table 4.11 mysqldump Options

Format Description Introduced Removed
--add-drop-database Add DROP DATABASE statement before each CREATE DATABASE statement
--add-drop-table Add DROP TABLE statement before each CREATE TABLE statement
--add-drop-trigger Add DROP TRIGGER statement before each CREATE TRIGGER statement
--add-locks Surround each table dump with LOCK TABLES and UNLOCK TABLES statements
--all-databases Dump all tables in all databases
--allow-keywords Allow creation of column names that are keywords
--apply-slave-statements Include STOP SLAVE prior to CHANGE MASTER statement and START SLAVE at end of output
--bind-address Use specified network interface to connect to MySQL Server
--character-sets-dir Directory where character sets are installed
--column-statistics Write ANALYZE TABLE statements to generate statistics histograms 8.0.2
--comments Add comments to dump file
--compact Produce more compact output
--compatible Produce output that is more compatible with other database systems or with older MySQL servers
--complete-insert Use complete INSERT statements that include column names
--compress Compress all information sent between client and server
--create-options Include all MySQL-specific table options in CREATE TABLE statements
--databases Interpret all name arguments as database names
--debug Write debugging log
--debug-check Print debugging information when program exits
--debug-info Print debugging information, memory, and CPU statistics when program exits
--default-auth Authentication plugin to use
--default-character-set Specify default character set
--defaults-extra-file Read named option file in addition to usual option files
--defaults-file Read only named option file
--defaults-group-suffix Option group suffix value
--delete-master-logs On a master replication server, delete the binary logs after performing the dump operation
--disable-keys For each table, surround INSERT statements with statements to disable and enable keys
--dump-date Include dump date as "Dump completed on" comment if --comments is given
--dump-slave Include CHANGE MASTER statement that lists binary log coordinates of slave's master
--enable-cleartext-plugin Enable cleartext authentication plugin
--events Dump events from dumped databases
--extended-insert Use multiple-row INSERT syntax
--fields-enclosed-by This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding clause for LOAD DATA
--fields-escaped-by This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding clause for LOAD DATA
--fields-optionally-enclosed-by This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding clause for LOAD DATA
--fields-terminated-by This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding clause for LOAD DATA
--flush-logs Flush MySQL server log files before starting dump
--flush-privileges Emit a FLUSH PRIVILEGES statement after dumping mysql database
--force Continue even if an SQL error occurs during a table dump
--get-server-public-key Request RSA public key from server 8.0.3
--help Display help message and exit
--hex-blob Dump binary columns using hexadecimal notation
--host Host to connect to (IP address or hostname)
--ignore-error Ignore specified errors
--ignore-table Do not dump given table
--include-master-host-port Include MASTER_HOST/MASTER_PORT options in CHANGE MASTER statement produced with --dump-slave
--insert-ignore Write INSERT IGNORE rather than INSERT statements
--lines-terminated-by This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding clause for LOAD DATA
--lock-all-tables Lock all tables across all databases
--lock-tables Lock all tables before dumping them
--log-error Append warnings and errors to named file
--login-path Read login path options from .mylogin.cnf
--master-data Write the binary log file name and position to the output
--max_allowed_packet Maximum packet length to send to or receive from server
--net_buffer_length Buffer size for TCP/IP and socket communication
--network-timeout Increase network timeouts to permit larger table dumps 8.0.1
--no-autocommit Enclose the INSERT statements for each dumped table within SET autocommit = 0 and COMMIT statements
--no-create-db Do not write CREATE DATABASE statements
--no-create-info Do not write CREATE TABLE statements that re-create each dumped table
--no-data Do not dump table contents
--no-defaults Read no option files
--no-set-names Same as --skip-set-charset
--no-tablespaces Do not write any CREATE LOGFILE GROUP or CREATE TABLESPACE statements in output
--opt Shorthand for --add-drop-table --add-locks --create-options --disable-keys --extended-insert --lock-tables --quick --set-charset.
--order-by-primary Dump each table's rows sorted by its primary key, or by its first unique index
--password Password to use when connecting to server
--pipe On Windows, connect to server using named pipe
--plugin-dir Directory where plugins are installed
--port TCP/IP port number for connection
--print-defaults Print default options
--protocol Connection protocol to use
--quick Retrieve rows for a table from the server a row at a time
--quote-names Quote identifiers within backtick characters
--replace Write REPLACE statements rather than INSERT statements
--result-file Direct output to a given file
--routines Dump stored routines (procedures and functions) from dumped databases
--secure-auth Do not send passwords to server in old (pre-4.1) format 8.0.3
--server-public-key-path Path name to file containing RSA public key 8.0.4
--set-charset Add SET NAMES default_character_set to output
--set-gtid-purged Whether to add SET @@GLOBAL.GTID_PURGED to output
--shared-memory-base-name Name of shared memory to use for shared-memory connections
--single-transaction Issue a BEGIN SQL statement before dumping data from server
--skip-add-drop-table Do not add a DROP TABLE statement before each CREATE TABLE statement
--skip-add-locks Do not add locks
--skip-comments Do not add comments to dump file
--skip-compact Do not produce more compact output
--skip-disable-keys Do not disable keys
--skip-extended-insert Turn off extended-insert
--skip-opt Turn off options set by --opt
--skip-quick Do not retrieve rows for a table from the server a row at a time
--skip-quote-names Do not quote identifiers
--skip-set-charset Do not write SET NAMES statement
--skip-triggers Do not dump triggers
--skip-tz-utc Turn off tz-utc
--socket For connections to localhost, the Unix socket file to use
--ssl-ca File that contains list of trusted SSL Certificate Authorities
--ssl-capath Directory that contains trusted SSL Certificate Authority certificate files
--ssl-cert File that contains X.509 certificate
--ssl-cipher List of permitted ciphers for connection encryption
--ssl-crl File that contains certificate revocation lists
--ssl-crlpath Directory that contains certificate revocation-list files
--ssl-fips-mode Whether to enable FIPS mode on client side 8.0.11
--ssl-key File that contains X.509 key
--ssl-mode Security state of connection to server
--tab Produce tab-separated data files
--tables Override --databases or -B option
--tls-ciphersuites TLSv1.3 ciphersuites permitted for encrypted connections 8.0.16
--tls-version Protocols permitted for encrypted connections
--triggers Dump triggers for each dumped table
--tz-utc Add SET TIME_ZONE='+00:00' to dump file
--user MySQL user name to use when connecting to server
--verbose Verbose mode
--version Display version information and exit
--where Dump only rows selected by given WHERE condition
--xml Produce XML output

Connection Options

The mysqldump command logs into a MySQL server to extract information. The following options specify how to connect to the MySQL server, either on the same machine or a remote system.

You can also set the following variables by using --var_name=value syntax:

  • max_allowed_packet

    The maximum size of the buffer for client/server communication. The default is 24MB, the maximum is 1GB.

  • net_buffer_length

    The initial size of the buffer for client/server communication. When creating multiple-row INSERT statements (as with the --extended-insert or --opt option), mysqldump creates rows up to net_buffer_length bytes long. If you increase this variable, ensure that the MySQL server net_buffer_length system variable has a value at least this large.

Option-File Options

These options are used to control which option files to read.

DDL Options

Usage scenarios for mysqldump include setting up an entire new MySQL instance (including database tables), and replacing data inside an existing instance with existing databases and tables. The following options let you specify which things to tear down and set up when restoring a dump, by encoding various DDL statements within the dump file.

Debug Options

The following options print debugging information, encode debugging information in the dump file, or let the dump operation proceed regardless of potential problems.

  • --allow-keywords

    Permit creation of column names that are keywords. This works by prefixing each column name with the table name.

  • --comments, -i

    Write additional information in the dump file such as program version, server version, and host. This option is enabled by default. To suppress this additional information, use --skip-comments.

  • --debug[=debug_options], -# [debug_options]

    Write a debugging log. A typical debug_options string is d:t:o,file_name. The default value is d:t:o,/tmp/mysqldump.trace.

  • --debug-check

    Print some debugging information when the program exits.

  • --debug-info

    Print debugging information and memory and CPU usage statistics when the program exits.

  • --dump-date

    If the --comments option is given, mysqldump produces a comment at the end of the dump of the following form:

    -- Dump completed on DATE

    However, the date causes dump files taken at different times to appear to be different, even if the data are otherwise identical. --dump-date and --skip-dump-date control whether the date is added to the comment. The default is --dump-date (include the date in the comment). --skip-dump-date suppresses date printing.

  • --force, -f

    Ignore all errors; continue even if an SQL error occurs during a table dump.

    One use for this option is to cause mysqldump to continue executing even when it encounters a view that has become invalid because the definition refers to a table that has been dropped. Without --force, mysqldump exits with an error message. With --force, mysqldump prints the error message, but it also writes an SQL comment containing the view definition to the dump output and continues executing.

    If the --ignore-error option is also given to ignore specific errors, --force takes precedence.

  • --log-error=file_name

    Log warnings and errors by appending them to the named file. The default is to do no logging.

  • --skip-comments

    See the description for the --comments option.

  • --verbose, -v

    Verbose mode. Print more information about what the program does.

Help Options

The following options display information about the mysqldump command itself.

  • --help, -?

    Display a help message and exit.

  • --version, -V

    Display version information and exit.

Internationalization Options

The following options change how the mysqldump command represents character data with national language settings.

Replication Options

The mysqldump command is frequently used to create an empty instance, or an instance including data, on a slave server in a replication configuration. The following options apply to dumping and restoring data on replication master and slave servers.

  • --apply-slave-statements

    For a slave dump produced with the --dump-slave option, add a STOP SLAVE statement before the CHANGE MASTER TO statement and a START SLAVE statement at the end of the output.

  • --delete-master-logs

    On a master replication server, delete the binary logs by sending a PURGE BINARY LOGS statement to the server after performing the dump operation. This option automatically enables --master-data.

  • --dump-slave[=value]

    This option is similar to --master-data except that it is used to dump a replication slave server to produce a dump file that can be used to set up another server as a slave that has the same master as the dumped server. It causes the dump output to include a CHANGE MASTER TO statement that indicates the binary log coordinates (file name and position) of the dumped slave's master. The CHANGE MASTER TO statement reads the values of Relay_Master_Log_File and Exec_Master_Log_Pos from the SHOW SLAVE STATUS output and uses them for MASTER_LOG_FILE and MASTER_LOG_POS respectively. These are the master server coordinates from which the slave should start replicating.


    Inconsistencies in the sequence of transactions from the relay log which have been executed can cause the wrong position to be used. See Section, “Replication and Transaction Inconsistencies” for more information.

    --dump-slave causes the coordinates from the master to be used rather than those of the dumped server, as is done by the --master-data option. In addition, specfiying this option causes the --master-data option to be overridden, if used, and effectively ignored.


    This option should not be used if the server where the dump is going to be applied uses gtid_mode=ON and MASTER_AUTOPOSITION=1.

    The option value is handled the same way as for --master-data (setting no value or 1 causes a CHANGE MASTER TO statement to be written to the dump, setting 2 causes the statement to be written but encased in SQL comments) and has the same effect as --master-data in terms of enabling or disabling other options and in how locking is handled.

    This option causes mysqldump to stop the slave SQL thread before the dump and restart it again after.

    In conjunction with --dump-slave, the --apply-slave-statements and --include-master-host-port options can also be used.

  • --include-master-host-port

    For the CHANGE MASTER TO statement in a slave dump produced with the --dump-slave option, add MASTER_HOST and MASTER_PORT options for the host name and TCP/IP port number of the slave's master.

  • --master-data[=value]

    Use this option to dump a master replication server to produce a dump file that can be used to set up another server as a slave of the master. It causes the dump output to include a CHANGE MASTER TO statement that indicates the binary log coordinates (file name and position) of the dumped server. These are the master server coordinates from which the slave should start replicating after you load the dump file into the slave.

    If the option value is 2, the CHANGE MASTER TO statement is written as an SQL comment, and thus is informative only; it has no effect when the dump file is reloaded. If the option value is 1, the statement is not written as a comment and takes effect when the dump file is reloaded. If no option value is specified, the default value is 1.

    This option requires the RELOAD privilege and the binary log must be enabled.

    The --master-data option automatically turns off --lock-tables. It also turns on --lock-all-tables, unless --single-transaction also is specified, in which case, a global read lock is acquired only for a short time at the beginning of the dump (see the description for --single-transaction). In all cases, any action on logs happens at the exact moment of the dump.

    It is also possible to set up a slave by dumping an existing slave of the master, using the --dump-slave option, which overrides --master-data and causes it to be ignored if both options are used.

  • --set-gtid-purged=value

    This option enables control over global transaction ID (GTID) information written to the dump file, by indicating whether to add a SET @@GLOBAL.gtid_purged statement to the output. This option may also cause a statement to be written to the output that disables binary logging while the dump file is being reloaded.

    The following table shows the permitted option values. The default value is AUTO.

    Value Meaning
    OFF Add no SET statement to the output.
    ON Add a SET statement to the output. An error occurs if GTIDs are not enabled on the server.
    AUTO Add a SET statement to the output if GTIDs are enabled on the server.

    A partial dump from a server that is using GTID-based replication requires the --set-gtid-purged={ON|OFF} option to be specified. Use ON if the intention is to deploy a new replication slave using only some of the data from the dumped server. Use OFF if the intention is to repair a table by copying it within a topology. Use OFF if the intention is to copy a table between replication topologies that are disjoint and will remain so.

    The --set-gtid-purged option has the following effect on binary logging when the dump file is reloaded:

    • --set-gtid-purged=OFF: SET @@SESSION.SQL_LOG_BIN=0; is not added to the output.

    • --set-gtid-purged=ON: SET @@SESSION.SQL_LOG_BIN=0; is added to the output.

    • --set-gtid-purged=AUTO: SET @@SESSION.SQL_LOG_BIN=0; is added to the output if GTIDs are enabled on the server you are backing up (that is, if AUTO evaluates to ON).


    It is not recommended to load a dump file when GTIDs are enabled on the server (gtid_mode=ON), if your dump file includes system tables. mysqldump issues DML instructions for the system tables which use the non-transactional MyISAM storage engine, and this combination is not permitted when GTIDs are enabled. Also be aware that loading a dump file from a server with GTIDs enabled, into another server with GTIDs enabled, causes different transaction identifiers to be generated.

Format Options

The following options specify how to represent the entire dump file or certain kinds of data in the dump file. They also control whether certain optional information is written to the dump file.

  • --compact

    Produce more compact output. This option enables the --skip-add-drop-table, --skip-add-locks, --skip-comments, --skip-disable-keys, and --skip-set-charset options.

  • --compatible=name

    Produce output that is more compatible with other database systems or with older MySQL servers. The only permitted value for this option is ansi, which has the same meaning as the corresponding option for setting the server SQL mode. See Section 5.1.11, “Server SQL Modes”.

  • --complete-insert, -c

    Use complete INSERT statements that include column names.

  • --create-options

    Include all MySQL-specific table options in the CREATE TABLE statements.

  • --fields-terminated-by=..., --fields-enclosed-by=..., --fields-optionally-enclosed-by=..., --fields-escaped-by=...

    These options are used with the --tab option and have the same meaning as the corresponding FIELDS clauses for LOAD DATA. See Section 13.2.7, “LOAD DATA Syntax”.

  • --hex-blob

    Dump binary columns using hexadecimal notation (for example, 'abc' becomes 0x616263). The affected data types are BINARY, VARBINARY, the BLOB types, and BIT.

  • --lines-terminated-by=...

    This option is used with the --tab option and has the same meaning as the corresponding LINES clause for LOAD DATA. See Section 13.2.7, “LOAD DATA Syntax”.

  • --quote-names, -Q

    Quote identifiers (such as database, table, and column names) within ` characters. If the ANSI_QUOTES SQL mode is enabled, identifiers are quoted within " characters. This option is enabled by default. It can be disabled with --skip-quote-names, but this option should be given after any option such as --compatible that may enable --quote-names.

  • --result-file=file_name, -r file_name

    Direct output to the named file. The result file is created and its previous contents overwritten, even if an error occurs while generating the dump.

    This option should be used on Windows to prevent newline \n characters from being converted to \r\n carriage return/newline sequences.

  • --tab=dir_name, -T dir_name

    Produce tab-separated text-format data files. For each dumped table, mysqldump creates a tbl_name.sql file that contains the CREATE TABLE statement that creates the table, and the server writes a tbl_name.txt file that contains its data. The option value is the directory in which to write the files.


    This option should be used only when mysqldump is run on the same machine as the mysqld server. Because the server creates *.txt files in the directory that you specify, the directory must be writable by the server and the MySQL account that you use must have the FILE privilege. Because mysqldump creates *.sql in the same directory, it must be writable by your system login account.

    By default, the .txt data files are formatted using tab characters between column values and a newline at the end of each line. The format can be specified explicitly using the --fields-xxx and --lines-terminated-by options.

    Column values are converted to the character set specified by the --default-character-set option.

  • --tz-utc

    This option enables TIMESTAMP columns to be dumped and reloaded between servers in different time zones. mysqldump sets its connection time zone to UTC and adds SET TIME_ZONE='+00:00' to the dump file. Without this option, TIMESTAMP columns are dumped and reloaded in the time zones local to the source and destination servers, which can cause the values to change if the servers are in different time zones. --tz-utc also protects against changes due to daylight saving time. --tz-utc is enabled by default. To disable it, use --skip-tz-utc.

  • --xml, -X

    Write dump output as well-formed XML.

    NULL, 'NULL', and Empty Values: For a column named column_name, the NULL value, an empty string, and the string value 'NULL' are distinguished from one another in the output generated by this option as follows.

    Value: XML Representation:
    NULL (unknown value)

    <field name="column_name" xsi:nil="true" />

    '' (empty string)

    <field name="column_name"></field>

    'NULL' (string value)

    <field name="column_name">NULL</field>

    The output from the mysql client when run using the --xml option also follows the preceding rules. (See Section, “mysql Client Options”.)

    XML output from mysqldump includes the XML namespace, as shown here:

    shell> mysqldump --xml -u root world City
    <?xml version="1.0"?>
    <mysqldump xmlns:xsi="">
    <database name="world">
    <table_structure name="City">
    <field Field="ID" Type="int(11)" Null="NO" Key="PRI" Extra="auto_increment" />
    <field Field="Name" Type="char(35)" Null="NO" Key="" Default="" Extra="" />
    <field Field="CountryCode" Type="char(3)" Null="NO" Key="" Default="" Extra="" />
    <field Field="District" Type="char(20)" Null="NO" Key="" Default="" Extra="" />
    <field Field="Population" Type="int(11)" Null="NO" Key="" Default="0" Extra="" />
    <key Table="City" Non_unique="0" Key_name="PRIMARY" Seq_in_index="1" Column_name="ID"
    Collation="A" Cardinality="4079" Null="" Index_type="BTREE" Comment="" />
    <options Name="City" Engine="MyISAM" Version="10" Row_format="Fixed" Rows="4079"
    Avg_row_length="67" Data_length="273293" Max_data_length="18858823439613951"
    Index_length="43008" Data_free="0" Auto_increment="4080"
    Create_time="2007-03-31 01:47:01" Update_time="2007-03-31 01:47:02"
    Collation="latin1_swedish_ci" Create_options="" Comment="" />
    <table_data name="City">
    <field name="ID">1</field>
    <field name="Name">Kabul</field>
    <field name="CountryCode">AFG</field>
    <field name="District">Kabol</field>
    <field name="Population">1780000</field>
    <field name="ID">4079</field>
    <field name="Name">Rafah</field>
    <field name="CountryCode">PSE</field>
    <field name="District">Rafah</field>
    <field name="Population">92020</field>

Filtering Options

The following options control which kinds of schema objects are written to the dump file: by category, such as triggers or events; by name, for example, choosing which databases and tables to dump; or even filtering rows from the table data using a WHERE clause.

  • --all-databases, -A

    Dump all tables in all databases. This is the same as using the --databases option and naming all the databases on the command line.

    Prior to MySQL 8.0, the --routines and --events options for mysqldump and mysqlpump were not required to include stored routines and events when using the --all-databases option: The dump included the mysql system database, and therefore also the mysql.proc and mysql.event tables containing stored routine and event definitions. As of MySQL 8.0, the mysql.event and mysql.proc tables are not used. Definitions for the corresponding objects are stored in data dictionary tables, but those tables are not dumped. To include stored routines and events in a dump made using --all-databases, use the --routines and --events options explicitly.

  • --databases, -B

    Dump several databases. Normally, mysqldump treats the first name argument on the command line as a database name and following names as table names. With this option, it treats all name arguments as database names. CREATE DATABASE and USE statements are included in the output before each new database.

    This option may be used to dump the performance_schema database, which normally is not dumped even with the --all-databases option. (Also use the --skip-lock-tables option.)

  • --events, -E

    Include Event Scheduler events for the dumped databases in the output. This option requires the EVENT privileges for those databases.

    The output generated by using --events contains CREATE EVENT statements to create the events.

  • --ignore-error=error[,error]...

    Ignore the specified errors. The option value is a list of comma-separated error numbers specifying the errors to ignore during mysqldump execution. If the --force option is also given to ignore all errors, --force takes precedence.

  • --ignore-table=db_name.tbl_name

    Do not dump the given table, which must be specified using both the database and table names. To ignore multiple tables, use this option multiple times. This option also can be used to ignore views.

  • --no-data, -d

    Do not write any table row information (that is, do not dump table contents). This is useful if you want to dump only the CREATE TABLE statement for the table (for example, to create an empty copy of the table by loading the dump file).

  • --routines, -R

    Include stored routines (procedures and functions) for the dumped databases in the output. This option requires the global SELECT privilege.

    The output generated by using --routines contains CREATE PROCEDURE and CREATE FUNCTION statements to create the routines.

  • --tables

    Override the --databases or -B option. mysqldump regards all name arguments following the option as table names.

  • --triggers

    Include triggers for each dumped table in the output. This option is enabled by default; disable it with --skip-triggers.

    To be able to dump a table's triggers, you must have the TRIGGER privilege for the table.

    Multiple triggers are permitted. mysqldump dumps triggers in activation order so that when the dump file is reloaded, triggers are created in the same activation order. However, if a mysqldump dump file contains multiple triggers for a table that have the same trigger event and action time, an error occurs for attempts to load the dump file into an older server that does not support multiple triggers. (For a workaround, see Downgrade Notes; you can convert triggers to be compatible with older servers.)

  • --where='where_condition', -w 'where_condition'

    Dump only rows selected by the given WHERE condition. Quotes around the condition are mandatory if it contains spaces or other characters that are special to your command interpreter.



Performance Options

The following options are the most relevant for the performance particularly of the restore operations. For large data sets, restore operation (processing the INSERT statements in the dump file) is the most time-consuming part. When it is urgent to restore data quickly, plan and test the performance of this stage in advance. For restore times measured in hours, you might prefer an alternative backup and restore solution, such as MySQL Enterprise Backup for InnoDB-only and mixed-use databases.

Performance is also affected by the transactional options, primarily for the dump operation.

  • --column-statistics

    Add ANALYZE TABLE statements to the output to generate histogram statistics for dumped tables when the dump file is reloaded. This option is disabled by default because histogram generation for large tables can take a long time.

  • --disable-keys, -K

    For each table, surround the INSERT statements with /*!40000 ALTER TABLE tbl_name DISABLE KEYS */; and /*!40000 ALTER TABLE tbl_name ENABLE KEYS */; statements. This makes loading the dump file faster because the indexes are created after all rows are inserted. This option is effective only for nonunique indexes of MyISAM tables.

  • --extended-insert, -e

    Write INSERT statements using multiple-row syntax that includes several VALUES lists. This results in a smaller dump file and speeds up inserts when the file is reloaded.

  • --insert-ignore

    Write INSERT IGNORE statements rather than INSERT statements.

  • --opt

    This option, enabled by default, is shorthand for the combination of --add-drop-table --add-locks --create-options --disable-keys --extended-insert --lock-tables --quick --set-charset. It gives a fast dump operation and produces a dump file that can be reloaded into a MySQL server quickly.

    Because the --opt option is enabled by default, you only specify its converse, the --skip-opt to turn off several default settings. See the discussion of mysqldump option groups for information about selectively enabling or disabling a subset of the options affected by --opt.

  • --quick, -q

    This option is useful for dumping large tables. It forces mysqldump to retrieve rows for a table from the server a row at a time rather than retrieving the entire row set and buffering it in memory before writing it out.

  • --skip-opt

    See the description for the --opt option.

Transactional Options

The following options trade off the performance of the dump operation, against the reliability and consistency of the exported data.

  • --add-locks

    Surround each table dump with LOCK TABLES and UNLOCK TABLES statements. This results in faster inserts when the dump file is reloaded. See Section, “Optimizing INSERT Statements”.

  • --flush-logs, -F

    Flush the MySQL server log files before starting the dump. This option requires the RELOAD privilege. If you use this option in combination with the --all-databases option, the logs are flushed for each database dumped. The exception is when using --lock-all-tables, --master-data, or --single-transaction: In this case, the logs are flushed only once, corresponding to the moment that all tables are locked by FLUSH TABLES WITH READ LOCK. If you want your dump and the log flush to happen at exactly the same moment, you should use --flush-logs together with --lock-all-tables, --master-data, or --single-transaction.

  • --flush-privileges

    Add a FLUSH PRIVILEGES statement to the dump output after dumping the mysql database. This option should be used any time the dump contains the mysql database and any other database that depends on the data in the mysql database for proper restoration.


    For upgrades to MySQL 5.7.2 or higher from older versions, do not use --flush-privileges. For upgrade instructions in this case, see Section 2.11.4, “Changes in MySQL 8.0”.

  • --lock-all-tables, -x

    Lock all tables across all databases. This is achieved by acquiring a global read lock for the duration of the whole dump. This option automatically turns off --single-transaction and --lock-tables.

  • --lock-tables, -l

    For each dumped database, lock all tables to be dumped before dumping them. The tables are locked with READ LOCAL to permit concurrent inserts in the case of MyISAM tables. For transactional tables such as InnoDB, --single-transaction is a much better option than --lock-tables because it does not need to lock the tables at all.

    Because --lock-tables locks tables for each database separately, this option does not guarantee that the tables in the dump file are logically consistent between databases. Tables in different databases may be dumped in completely different states.

    Some options, such as --opt, automatically enable --lock-tables. If you want to override this, use --skip-lock-tables at the end of the option list.

  • --no-autocommit

    Enclose the INSERT statements for each dumped table within SET autocommit = 0 and COMMIT statements.

  • --order-by-primary

    Dump each table's rows sorted by its primary key, or by its first unique index, if such an index exists. This is useful when dumping a MyISAM table to be loaded into an InnoDB table, but makes the dump operation take considerably longer.

  • --shared-memory-base-name=name

    On Windows, the shared-memory name to use, for connections made using shared memory to a local server. The default value is MYSQL. The shared-memory name is case-sensitive.

    The server must be started with the --shared-memory option to enable shared-memory connections.

  • --single-transaction

    This option sets the transaction isolation mode to REPEATABLE READ and sends a START TRANSACTION SQL statement to the server before dumping data. It is useful only with transactional tables such as InnoDB, because then it dumps the consistent state of the database at the time when START TRANSACTION was issued without blocking any applications.

    When using this option, you should keep in mind that only InnoDB tables are dumped in a consistent state. For example, any MyISAM or MEMORY tables dumped while using this option may still change state.

    While a --single-transaction dump is in process, to ensure a valid dump file (correct table contents and binary log coordinates), no other connection should use the following statements: ALTER TABLE, CREATE TABLE, DROP TABLE, RENAME TABLE, TRUNCATE TABLE. A consistent read is not isolated from those statements, so use of them on a table to be dumped can cause the SELECT that is performed by mysqldump to retrieve the table contents to obtain incorrect contents or fail.

    The --single-transaction option and the --lock-tables option are mutually exclusive because LOCK TABLES causes any pending transactions to be committed implicitly.

    To dump large tables, combine the --single-transaction option with the --quick option.

Option Groups

  • The --opt option turns on several settings that work together to perform a fast dump operation. All of these settings are on by default, because --opt is on by default. Thus you rarely if ever specify --opt. Instead, you can turn these settings off as a group by specifying --skip-opt, the optionally re-enable certain settings by specifying the associated options later on the command line.

  • The --compact option turns off several settings that control whether optional statements and comments appear in the output. Again, you can follow this option with other options that re-enable certain settings, or turn all the settings on by using the --skip-compact form.

When you selectively enable or disable the effect of a group option, order is important because options are processed first to last. For example, --disable-keys --lock-tables --skip-opt would not have the intended effect; it is the same as --skip-opt by itself.


To make a backup of an entire database:

shell> mysqldump db_name > backup-file.sql

To load the dump file back into the server:

shell> mysql db_name < backup-file.sql

Another way to reload the dump file:

shell> mysql -e "source /path-to-backup/backup-file.sql" db_name

mysqldump is also very useful for populating databases by copying data from one MySQL server to another:

shell> mysqldump --opt db_name | mysql --host=remote_host -C db_name

You can dump several databases with one command:

shell> mysqldump --databases db_name1 [db_name2 ...] > my_databases.sql

To dump all databases, use the --all-databases option:

shell> mysqldump --all-databases > all_databases.sql

For InnoDB tables, mysqldump provides a way of making an online backup:

shell> mysqldump --all-databases --master-data --single-transaction > all_databases.sql

This backup acquires a global read lock on all tables (using FLUSH TABLES WITH READ LOCK) at the beginning of the dump. As soon as this lock has been acquired, the binary log coordinates are read and the lock is released. If long updating statements are running when the FLUSH statement is issued, the MySQL server may get stalled until those statements finish. After that, the dump becomes lock free and does not disturb reads and writes on the tables. If the update statements that the MySQL server receives are short (in terms of execution time), the initial lock period should not be noticeable, even with many updates.

For point-in-time recovery (also known as roll-forward, when you need to restore an old backup and replay the changes that happened since that backup), it is often useful to rotate the binary log (see Section 5.4.4, “The Binary Log”) or at least know the binary log coordinates to which the dump corresponds:

shell> mysqldump --all-databases --master-data=2 > all_databases.sql


shell> mysqldump --all-databases --flush-logs --master-data=2
              > all_databases.sql

The --master-data and --single-transaction options can be used simultaneously, which provides a convenient way to make an online backup suitable for use prior to point-in-time recovery if tables are stored using the InnoDB storage engine.

For more information on making backups, see Section 7.2, “Database Backup Methods”, and Section 7.3, “Example Backup and Recovery Strategy”.


mysqldump does not dump the performance_schema or sys schema by default. To dump any of these, name them explicitly on the command line. You can also name them with the --databases option. For performance_schema, also use the --skip-lock-tables option.

mysqldump does not dump the INFORMATION_SCHEMA schema.

mysqldump does not dump InnoDB CREATE TABLESPACE statements.

mysqldump does not dump the NDB Cluster ndbinfo information database.

mysqldump includes statements to recreate the general_log and slow_query_log tables for dumps of the mysql database. Log table contents are not dumped.

If you encounter problems backing up views due to insufficient privileges, see Section C.5, “Restrictions on Views” for a workaround.

User Comments
User comments in this section are, as the name implies, provided by MySQL users. The MySQL documentation team is not responsible for, nor do they endorse, any of the information provided here.
  Posted by Arbaoui Mehdi on May 15, 2011
  Posted by Alejandro Arauz on October 10, 2011
The mysqldump command is very helpful but sometimes you don't have the necessary permissions on the server to run this command (like in shared enviroments).

I had this problem before and searching for backup tools I found MySqlBackupFTP ( is easy to use and it has a free version that allows you to connect to a remote phpMyAdmin instance.

I hope it helps others with the same problem.
  Posted by DBA Lead on June 29, 2012
Fast, parallel restore from SQL dumps (mysqldump) for MySQL. The technique is very simple and straightforward.
  Posted by Bill Plimpton on March 14, 2014
To get return code of mysql use:

mysqldump $MYSQL_OPTS $database $tables |gzip -1 >$path
if [ ${PIPESTATUS[0]} != 0 ]; then
echo " ## Backup of $db tables $tables FAILED! ##"
echo "Backup of $db $tables successful!"