How to install MySQL 5.7 Server on Ubuntu 16.04

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This is not the first time I need to install and configure a MySql Community Server on a fresh system with Ubuntu (16.04) running on it. So instead next time to have to google for the individual steps again, I decided to write a post. Find out also how to tweak the Server configuration.

Install MySQL Server

This guide is based on the official MySQL documentation - A Quick Guide to Using the MySQL APT Repository, where my own data is used instead.

Add the MySQL APT Repository

Go to the download page for the MySQL APT repository at and select the package for my Linux distribution. As said mine is Ubuntu 16.04, which is covered by the mysql-apt-config_0.8.1-1_all.deb package at the time of this writing:

shell> wget

Next install the release package with the following command:

shell> sudo dpkg -i mysql-apt-config_0.8.1-1_all.deb

Selecting previously unselected package mysql-apt-config.
(Reading database ... 27837 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack mysql-apt-config_0.8.1-1_all.deb ...
Unpacking mysql-apt-config (0.8.1-1) ...
Setting up mysql-apt-config (0.8.1-1) ...
locale: Cannot set LC_CTYPE to default locale: No such file or directory
locale: Cannot set LC_ALL to default locale: No such file or directory
/usr/bin/locale: Cannot set LC_CTYPE to default locale: No such file or directory
/usr/bin/locale: Cannot set LC_ALL to default locale: No such file or directory

During installation I chose the MySQL 5.7 Server version

The next mandatory step is to update the package information from the MySQL APT repository

shell> sudo apt-get update

Hit:1 xenial InRelease
Get:2 xenial-updates InRelease [102 kB]
Get:3 xenial-backports InRelease [102 kB]
Get:4 xenial InRelease [14.2 kB]
Hit:5 xenial InRelease
Get:6 xenial-security InRelease [102 kB]
Get:7 xenial/mysql-5.7 Sources [886 B]
Get:8 xenial/mysql-apt-config amd64 Packages [567 B]
Get:9 xenial/mysql-apt-config i386 Packages [567 B]
Get:10 xenial/mysql-5.7 amd64 Packages [2709 B]
Get:11 xenial/mysql-5.7 i386 Packages [2712 B]
Get:12 xenial/mysql-tools amd64 Packages [2608 B]
Get:13 xenial/mysql-tools i386 Packages [1928 B]
Fetched 333 kB in 0s (603 kB/s)
Reading package lists... Done

Installing MySQL with APT

Now to install MySQL execute the following command:

shell> sudo apt-get install mysql-server

You will be asked for the root password during the installation. Make a note of it if you want to spare the time needed to reset it later1

The server is started automatically after installation. You can check the version of the server by issuing the following command:

shell> mysql --version

mysql  Ver 14.14 Distrib 5.7.17, for Linux (x86_64) using  EditLine wrapper

Starting and stopping the MySQL Server

You can check the status:

shell> sudo service mysql status

stop it:

shell> sudo service mysql stop

and start it again:

shell> sudo service mysql start

Because I am lazy and I will probably repeat these commands several times, at least in the beginning, I defined some aliases for them - snippet from my .bash_aliases file:

# MySql
alias mysql-start="sudo service mysql start"
alias mysql-stop="sudo service mysql stop"
alias mysql-restart="sudo service mysql restart"
alias mysql-status="sudo service mysql status"
alias mysql-connect-root="mysql -uroot -p"
alias"sudo vim /etc/mysql/mysql.conf.d/mysqld.cnf"

See my post A developer’s guide to using aliases to learn how I’ve become best buddies with the Bash alias. O, and I’ve also created a video with it.

Tune MySQL configuration

Most of the default configuration values are fine, but you can tweak it if you don’t have enough memory 2 (like my server running on a 2GB RAM machine) or want to improve performance 3.

I have personally written about optimizing MySQL Server Settings, but this remains a science for itself to me. Anyway before you are ready to override a default value in my.cnf, have a look in the official documentation about Server System Variables and try to reason what each really means…

Now which configuration file should I use, because there are bunch of them under the /etc/mysql directory:

|-- conf.d
|   -- mysql.cnf
|-- my.cnf -> /etc/alternatives/my.cnf
|-- my.cnf.fallback
|-- mysql.cnf
|-- mysql.cnf.2017-01-13-original
|-- mysql.conf.d
    -- mysqld.cnf

Well, because these are server settings, I want to override I need to put them below the [mysld] tag, which is to be found in mysqld.conf. So edit this file:

shell> sudo vim /etc/mysql/mysql.conf.d/mysqld.cnf

which looks like the following:

# The MySQL  Server configuration file.
# For explanations see

pid-file        = /var/run/mysqld/
socket          = /var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock
datadir         = /var/lib/mysql
log-error       = /var/log/mysql/error.log
# By default we only accept connections from localhost
bind-address    =
# Disabling symbolic-links is recommended to prevent assorted security risks

# my overrides
max_allowed_packet = 1M
max_connections = 75
table_open_cache = 32M
key_buffer_size = 32M

Remember these are values for a small 2GB RAM server. It is supposed to run one MySQL Database among a bunch of other servers… Also very important to notice is that you can now change the configuration values at runtime, but they won’t be persisted when the server is restarted.


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Adrian Matei (aka adixchen)

Adrian Matei (aka adixchen)
Life force expressing itself as a coding capable human being

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