Sphinx 0.9.8 is released!

The Sphinx project just released version 0.9.8, with many enhancements since the previous release. There’s never been a better time to try it out. It’s really cool technology.

What is Sphinx? Glad you asked. It’s fast, efficient, scalable, relevant full-text searching and a heck of a lot more. In fact, Sphinx complements MySQL for a lot of non-search queries that MySQL frankly isn’t very good at, including WHERE clauses on low-selectivity columns, ORDER BY with a LIMIT and OFFSET, and GROUP BY. A lot of you are probably running fairly simple queries with these constructs and getting really bad performance in MySQL. I see it a lot when I’m working with clients, and there’s often not much room for optimization. Sphinx can execute a subset of such queries very efficiently, due to its smart I/O algorithms and the way it uses memory. By “subset” I mean you don’t get the full complexity of SQL, but you get enough functionality for lots of the poorly-performing queries I see in the wild. It’s a 95% solution.

Is Sphinx for you? Good question. You can find answers in Appendix C in High Performance MySQL. And yes, that is why I wrote this blog post – to put in a plug for the book. *grin* But before I go, let me put in another plug for Sphinx: go vote for it on Sourceforge! If it’s voted as one of the Community Choice projects of the year, that will be fantastic.

I'm Baron Schwartz, the founder and CEO of VividCortex. I am the author of High Performance MySQL and many open-source tools for performance analysis, monitoring, and system administration. I contribute to various database communities such as Oracle, PostgreSQL, Redis and MongoDB.