Video Interview with ProxySQL Creator René Cannaò

Forrest Lymburner


In anticipation of this month’s webinar MySQL & MariaDB Load Balancing with ProxySQL & ClusterControl that will happen on February 28th Severalnines sat down with the creator of ProxySQL founder and creator René Cannaò to discuss his revolutionary product, how it’s used, and what he plans to cover in the webinar. Watch the video or read the transcript below of the interview.

Transcript of Interview

Hi I’m Forrest and I’m from the Severalnines marketing team and I’m here interviewing René Cannaò from ProxySQL. René thanks for joining me. Let’s start by introducing yourself, where did you come from?

Thank you, Forrest. Without going into too many details, I came from a system administrator background, and as a system administrator I got fascinated by databases, so I then become a DBA. In my past experience I worked as a Support Engineer for MySQL/Sun/Oracle, where I got of experience about MySQL… then remote DBA for PalominoDB and after that working as a MySQL SRE for Dropbox and I founded of ProxySQL.

So What is ProxySQL?

ProxySQL is a lightweight yet complex protocol aware proxy that sits between the MySQL clients and servers. I like to describe it as a gate, in fact the Stargate is the logo, so basically it separates clients from databases, therefore an entry point to access all the databases server.

Why did you create ProxySQL?

That’s a very interesting question, and very important. As a DBA, it was always extremely difficult to control the traffic sent to the database. This was the main reason to create ProxySQL: basically it’s a layer that separates the database from the application (de facto splitting them into two different layers), and because it’s sitting in the middle it’s able to control and manage all the traffic between the two, and also transparently managing failures.

So there are several database load balancers in the market, what differentiates ProxySQL from others?

First, most of the load balancers do not understand MySQL protocol: ProxySQL understands it, and this allows the implementation of features otherwise impossible to implement. Among the few proxies that are able to understand the MySQL protocol, ProxySQL is the only one designed from DBAs for DBAs, therefore it is designed to solve real issues and challenges as a DBA. For example, ProxySQL is the only proxy supporting connections multiplexing and query caching.

I noticed on your website that you say that ProxySQL isn’t battle-tested, its WAR-tested. What have you done to put ProxySQL through its paces?

The point is that from the very beginning ProxySQL was architected and designed to behave correctly in extremely demanding and very complex setups with millions of clients connections and thousands of database servers. Other proxies won’t be able to handle this. So, a lot of effort was invested in making sure ProxySQL is resilient in such complex setups. And, of course, no matter how resient it is set up it should not sacrifice performance.

On the 28th of February you will be co-hosting a webinar with Severalnines; with Krzysztof one or our Support Engineers. What are some of the topics you are going to cover at that event?

ProxySQL is built upon new technology data not present in other load balancers, its features and concepts are not always intuitive. Some concepts are extremely original in ProxySQL. For this reason the topics I plan to cover at the event are hostgroups, query rules, connection multiplexing, failures handling, and configuration management. Again, those are all the features and concepts that are only present in ProxySQL.

Excellent, well thank you for joining me, I’m really looking forward to this webinar on the 28th.

Thank you, Forrest.

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