WordPress started as an Open-Source Content Management System (CMS), that was written in PHP supplemented with a MariaDB or MySQL database. It was developed as a blog-publishing system but it evolved to support other types of web content like forums, traditional mailing lists, and online stores, to name a few.

MariaDB on the other hand is a commercially supported fork of MySQL Relational Database Management System. It started as an Open-Source community-developed software.

When you integrate WordPress MariaDB, you get to optimize your WordPress experience; from enhanced performance and scalability to robust data management.

This article covers the different steps involved in setting up a WordPress MariaDB Integration in detail. It first covers the basics of the two tools namely their key features before diving into the integration setup.  

Introduction to WordPress

WordPress logo: WordPress MariaDB
Image Source: PNGImage

WordPress is currently one of the most widely used CMS in the market, with over 41% of the top 10 million websites leveraging it. WordPress has also found uses across other fields such as Pervasive Display Systems (PDS). 

To start working on WordPress, you need to install it on a web server, where a computer runs the software package WordPress.org to serve as a network host or as a part of a hosting service like WordPress.com. You can use a local computer for learning purposes and single-user testing.

WordPress ensures more human-readable permalinks by directing all requests for non-static URIs to a single PHP file. This file can parse the URI and identify the target page.

The key features of WordPress are as follows:

  • Ease of Publishing: WordPress became popular because of how easy it was to publish any form of content on the internet with it. You can pen down pages and posts, plug in different types of media, and format them easily in a matter of a few clicks. Once you have ironed out the details, you can get your content on the web with just a click with WordPress.    
  • User Management: You can decide the different levels of access for your website. Every website has a number of people associated with it. An editor works on content, the administrator manages the site, contributors and authors write the content, and subscribers have a profile to manage. 
  • Publishing Tools: You can manage your content seamlessly with WordPress. You can glance through post revisions, create drafts, and even schedule publications. You can decide if you wish to make your content private or public. If you wish to make some content private, you can secure it with a password in a hassle-free fashion.
  • Media Management: The ability to add media seamlessly is imperative for a CMS. With WordPress in place, you can simply drag and drop media to the uploader to add it to your website. Apart from the ability to add captions and alt text, WordPress houses a few image editing tools that you can play around with.
  • Flexibility: WordPress allows you to develop every type of website imaginable, ranging from a personal blog to an eCommerce website. You can improve your website with custom themes built for specific use cases and supplement it with various plugins to work on a better user interface for your users. WordPress also grants you the freedom to build a website from scratch and build it to completion in no time flat.
  • Simplicity: The WordPress interface allows you to get publishing very quickly, with a simplistic UI to supplement your user experience.
  • Optimized for SEO: WordPress has been optimized for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) right out of the gate. To achieve a more fine-grained SEO control, you can utilize various SEO plugins offered by WordPress.
  • Easy Installation and Upgrades: WordPress is very easy to install and upgrade. Numerous web hosts offer one-click WordPress installers. If you prefer an FTP program, you can start by creating a database, uploading WordPress with FTP, and then running the installer.    
WordPress working: WordPress MariaDB
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Introduction to MariaDB

MariaDB logo: WordPress MariaDB
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The MariaDB platform houses the versatility to handle analytical, transactional, and hybrid analytical/transactional workloads along with document and relational data. It also can scale columnar Data Warehouses and standalone databases to fully distributed SQL databases executing millions of transactions every second. It can also perform Ad Hoc analysis on a billion rows for a start.

MariaDB architecture (SkySQL): WordPress MariaDB
Image Source: SkySQL

SkySQL is a DBaaS (Database-as-a-Service) that brings the best of the MariaDB platform to the Cloud. This includes its support for analytical, transactional, and hybrid workloads. It is built on Kubernetes and enterprise reliability with ease of use, world-class support, and self-service to run mission-critical databases in the Cloud, with enterprise governance.

Here are a few key features of MariaDB:

  • MariaDB utilizes a popular and standard querying language, same as MySQL.
  • It also offers the Galera cluster technology.
  • MariaDB offers support for PHP, one of the most popular web development languages.
  • It runs on a large number of operating systems and supports a wide variety of programming languages.
  • MariaDB also includes an expansive selection of storage engines, like high-performance storage engines that can work well with other RDBMS data sources.       
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  • Live Monitoring: Hevo allows you to monitor the data flow so you can check where your data is at a particular point in time.

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Steps to Set Up the WordPress MariaDB Integration

WordPress started with MySQL as its backend, but since MariaDB was developed as a drop-in replacement of MySQL, MySQL can be replaced with MariaDB as the backend for WordPress. This takes advantage of MariaDB’s better performance in addition to new features like new and improved database engines. Here are the steps you can follow to set up WordPress MariaDB Integration:

WordPress MariaDB Integration: Establishing an SSH Connection

  • To kickstart the process, you can start by migrating your existing MySQL database systems to MariaDB. 
  • Establish an SSH connection to your server first, and then stop the MySQL service with the following command:
/etc/init.d/mysqld stop
  • You should see the confirmation as Stopping mysqld: [ OK ].
  • Before migrating, make sure that you backup your databases. For Linux, you can use the following commands:
cp /var/lib/mysql/ backup/ -r cp /etc/my.cnf backup/

WordPress MariaDB Integration: MySQL Service Removal

  • After backing up your essential database operations, the next step is the removal of MySQL service from your server. First, get a list of all the installed MySQL packages as follows:
rpm -qa | grep mysql
  • Uninstall the MySQL client and server, the development tools, the libraries by executing the following command yum remove mysql mysql-server mysql-devel mysql-libs 
  • To wrap up this step, verify your distribution and Kernel versions as follows:
cat /etc/redhat-release
CentOS release 6.4 (Final)
uname -a
Linux test.server 2.6.32-358.23.2.el6.i686 #1 SMP Wed Oct 16 17:21:31 UTC 2013 i686 i686 i386 GNU/Linux

WordPress MariaDB Integration: Repository File Generation

  • The next step in the process is to generate the correct MariaDB repository file and store it under the /etc/yum.repos.d/ folder, based on the information from the commands report as follows:
[root@test yum.repos.d]# cat MariaDB.repo
# MariaDB 5.5 CentOS repository list - created 2014-06-01 14:13 UTC
# http://mariadb.org/mariadb/repositories/
name = MariaDB
baseurl = http://yum.mariadb.org/5.5/centos6-x86

WordPress MariaDB Integration: MariaDB Installation

  • In the installation of the repository file, as shown above, the URL of the GPG key is included. This is needed to verify the integrity of the package downloaded. The next step in this process is MariaDB installation. You can carry this out as follows:
yum clean all
yum install MariaDB-server MariaDB-client

WordPress MariaDB Integration: MariaDB Version Verification

  • Yum retrieves and imports the GPG (GNU Privacy Guard) key in the MariaDB installation process. It installs the MariaDB-compat and MariaDB-common dependencies along with the MariaDB server and client applications. Next, you need to start the MariaDB service and verify the version as follows:
/etc/init.d/mysql start
Starting MySQL... SUCCESS!
Welcome to the MariaDB monitor.  Commands end with ; or g.
Your MariaDB connection id is 2
Server version: 5.5.37-MariaDB MariaDB Server
Copyright (c) 2000, 2014, Oracle, Monty Program Ab and others.
Type 'help;' or 'h' for help. Type 'c' to clear the current input statement.
MariaDB [(none)]> SHOW VARIABLES LIKE "%version%";
| Variable_name           | Value               |
| innodb_version          | 5.5.37-MariaDB-34.0 |
| protocol_version        | 10                  |
| slave_type_conversions  |                     |
| version                 | 5.5.37-MariaDB      |
| version_comment         | MariaDB Server      |
| version_compile_machine | i686                |
| version_compile_os      | Linux               |
7 rows in set (0.01 sec)

WordPress MariaDB Integration: Verification of WordPress Imports

  • This step would conclude the WordPress MariaDB Integration. To verify if your WordPress database is correctly imported, you can run a few simple MySQL queries for verification as follows:
MariaDB [(none)]> use wp1;
MariaDB [wp1]> explain wp_options;
| Field        | Type                | Null | Key | Default | Extra          |
| option_id    | bigint(20) unsigned | NO   | PRI | NULL    | auto_increment |
| option_name  | varchar(64)         | NO   | UNI |         |                |
| option_value | longtext            | NO   |     | NULL    |                |
| autoload     | varchar(20)         | NO   |     | yes     |                |
4 rows in set (0.01 sec)
MariaDB [wp1]> select * from wp_options where option_name like "%home%";
| option_id | option_name | option_value          | autoload |
|        36 | home        | http://testdomain.com/| yes      |
1 row in set (0.01 sec)

The functionality of the WordPress websites can be confirmed by loading them on a web browser as well.


This article talks about the steps you can follow to set up the WordPress MariaDB Integration in 6 simple steps. It also covers a brief overview of the features of the two tools before getting down to brass tacks. 

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Share your experiences of connecting WordPress MariaDB in the comment section below!

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