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8.7. myisampack — Generate Compressed, Read-Only MyISAM Tables

The myisampack utility compresses MyISAM tables. myisampack works by compressing each column in the table separately. Usually, myisampack packs the data file 40%-70%.

When the table is used later, the server reads into memory the information needed to decompress columns. This results in much better performance when accessing individual rows, because you only have to uncompress exactly one row.

MySQL uses mmap() when possible to perform memory mapping on compressed tables. If mmap() does not work, MySQL falls back to normal read/write file operations.

A similar utility, pack_isam, compresses ISAM tables. Because ISAM tables are deprecated, this section discusses only myisampack, but the general procedures for using myisampack are also true for pack_isam unless otherwise specified. References to myisamchk should be read as references to isamchk if you are using pack_isam.

Please note the following:

Invoke myisampack like this:

shell> myisampack [options] file_name ...

Each filename argument should be the name of an index (.MYI) file. If you are not in the database directory, you should specify the pathname to the file. It is permissible to omit the .MYI extension.

After you compress a table with myisampack, you should use myisamchk -rq to rebuild its indexes. Section 8.5, “myisamchk — MyISAM Table-Maintenance Utility”.

myisampack supports the following options:

The following sequence of commands illustrates a typical table compression session:

shell> ls -l station.*
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my         994128 Apr 17 19:00 station.MYD
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my          53248 Apr 17 19:00 station.MYI
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my           5767 Apr 17 19:00 station.frm

shell> myisamchk -dvv station

MyISAM file:     station
Isam-version:  2
Creation time: 1996-03-13 10:08:58
Recover time:  1997-02-02  3:06:43
Data records:              1192  Deleted blocks:              0
Datafile parts:            1192  Deleted data:                0
Datafile pointer (bytes):     2  Keyfile pointer (bytes):     2
Max datafile length:   54657023  Max keyfile length:   33554431
Recordlength:               834
Record format: Fixed length

table description:
Key Start Len Index   Type                 Root  Blocksize    Rec/key
1   2     4   unique  unsigned long        1024       1024          1
2   32    30  multip. text                10240       1024          1

Field Start Length Type
1     1     1
2     2     4
3     6     4
4     10    1
5     11    20
6     31    1
7     32    30
8     62    35
9     97    35
10    132   35
11    167   4
12    171   16
13    187   35
14    222   4
15    226   16
16    242   20
17    262   20
18    282   20
19    302   30
20    332   4
21    336   4
22    340   1
23    341   8
24    349   8
25    357   8
26    365   2
27    367   2
28    369   4
29    373   4
30    377   1
31    378   2
32    380   8
33    388   4
34    392   4
35    396   4
36    400   4
37    404   1
38    405   4
39    409   4
40    413   4
41    417   4
42    421   4
43    425   4
44    429   20
45    449   30
46    479   1
47    480   1
48    481   79
49    560   79
50    639   79
51    718   79
52    797   8
53    805   1
54    806   1
55    807   20
56    827   4
57    831   4

shell> myisampack station.MYI
Compressing station.MYI: (1192 records)
- Calculating statistics

normal:     20  empty-space:   16  empty-zero:     12  empty-fill:  11
pre-space:   0  end-space:     12  table-lookups:   5  zero:         7
Original trees:  57  After join: 17
- Compressing file
87.14%
Remember to run myisamchk -rq on compressed tables

shell> ls -l station.*
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my         127874 Apr 17 19:00 station.MYD
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my          55296 Apr 17 19:04 station.MYI
-rw-rw-r--   1 monty    my           5767 Apr 17 19:00 station.frm

shell> myisamchk -dvv station

MyISAM file:     station
Isam-version:  2
Creation time: 1996-03-13 10:08:58
Recover time:  1997-04-17 19:04:26
Data records:               1192  Deleted blocks:              0
Datafile parts:             1192  Deleted data:                0
Datafile pointer (bytes):      3  Keyfile pointer (bytes):     1
Max datafile length:    16777215  Max keyfile length:     131071
Recordlength:                834
Record format: Compressed

table description:
Key Start Len Index   Type                 Root  Blocksize    Rec/key
1   2     4   unique  unsigned long       10240       1024          1
2   32    30  multip. text                54272       1024          1

Field Start Length Type                         Huff tree  Bits
1     1     1      constant                             1     0
2     2     4      zerofill(1)                          2     9
3     6     4      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9
4     10    1                                           3     9
5     11    20     table-lookup                         4     0
6     31    1                                           3     9
7     32    30     no endspace, not_always              5     9
8     62    35     no endspace, not_always, no empty    6     9
9     97    35     no empty                             7     9
10    132   35     no endspace, not_always, no empty    6     9
11    167   4      zerofill(1)                          2     9
12    171   16     no endspace, not_always, no empty    5     9
13    187   35     no endspace, not_always, no empty    6     9
14    222   4      zerofill(1)                          2     9
15    226   16     no endspace, not_always, no empty    5     9
16    242   20     no endspace, not_always              8     9
17    262   20     no endspace, no empty                8     9
18    282   20     no endspace, no empty                5     9
19    302   30     no endspace, no empty                6     9
20    332   4      always zero                          2     9
21    336   4      always zero                          2     9
22    340   1                                           3     9
23    341   8      table-lookup                         9     0
24    349   8      table-lookup                        10     0
25    357   8      always zero                          2     9
26    365   2                                           2     9
27    367   2      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9
28    369   4      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9
29    373   4      table-lookup                        11     0
30    377   1                                           3     9
31    378   2      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9
32    380   8      no zeros                             2     9
33    388   4      always zero                          2     9
34    392   4      table-lookup                        12     0
35    396   4      no zeros, zerofill(1)               13     9
36    400   4      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9
37    404   1                                           2     9
38    405   4      no zeros                             2     9
39    409   4      always zero                          2     9
40    413   4      no zeros                             2     9
41    417   4      always zero                          2     9
42    421   4      no zeros                             2     9
43    425   4      always zero                          2     9
44    429   20     no empty                             3     9
45    449   30     no empty                             3     9
46    479   1                                          14     4
47    480   1                                          14     4
48    481   79     no endspace, no empty               15     9
49    560   79     no empty                             2     9
50    639   79     no empty                             2     9
51    718   79     no endspace                         16     9
52    797   8      no empty                             2     9
53    805   1                                          17     1
54    806   1                                           3     9
55    807   20     no empty                             3     9
56    827   4      no zeros, zerofill(2)                2     9
57    831   4      no zeros, zerofill(1)                2     9

myisampack displays the following kinds of information:

After a table has been compressed, myisamchk -dvv prints additional information about each column:

After you run myisampack, you must run myisamchk to re-create any indexes. At this time, you can also sort the index blocks and create statistics needed for the MySQL optimizer to work more efficiently:

shell> myisamchk -rq --sort-index --analyze tbl_name.MYI

A similar procedure applies for ISAM tables. After using pack_isam, use isamchk to re-create the indexes:

shell> isamchk -rq --sort-index --analyze tbl_name.ISM

After you have installed the packed table into the MySQL database directory, you should execute mysqladmin flush-tables to force mysqld to start using the new table.

To unpack a packed table, use the --unpack option to myisamchk or isamchk.

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