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MySQL () is an
open-source Open source is source code that is made freely available for possible modification and redistribution. Products include permission to use the source code, design documents, or content of the product. The open-source model is a decentralized softwar ...
relational database management system A relational database is a digital database based on the relational model of data, as proposed by E. F. Codd in 1970. A system used to maintain relational databases is a relational database management system (RDBMS). Many relational database syste ...
(RDBMS). Its name is a combination of "My", the name of co-founder
Michael Widenius Ulf Michael Widenius (often called Monty; born 3 March 1962, in Helsinki Helsinki ( or ; ; sv, Helsingfors, ; la, Helsingia) is the Capital city, capital, primate city, primate and List of cities and towns in Finland, most populous city ...
's daughter, and "
SQL SQL ( ''S-Q-L'', "sequel"; Structured Query Language) is a domain-specific languageA domain-specific language (DSL) is a computer languageA computer language is a method of communication with a computer A computer is a machine that can b ...

SQL
", the abbreviation for Structured Query Language. A
relational database A relational database is a digital database In , a database is an organized collection of stored and accessed electronically from a . Where databases are more complex they are often developed using formal techniques. The (DBMS) is the tha ...
organizes data into one or more data tables in which data types may be related to each other; these relations help structure the data. SQL is a language programmers use to create, modify and extract data from the relational database, as well as control user access to the database. In addition to relational databases and SQL, an RDBMS like MySQL works with an
operating system An operating system (OS) is system software System software is software designed to provide a platform for other software. Examples of system software include operating systems (OS) like macOS, Linux, Android (operating system), Android and Mi ...

operating system
to implement a relational database in a computer's storage system, manages users, allows for network access and facilitates testing database integrity and creation of backups. MySQL is
free and open-source software Free and open-source software (FOSS) is software Software is a collection of instructions that tell a computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. ...
under the terms of the
GNU General Public License The GNU General Public License (GNU GPL or simply GPL) is a series of widely used free software license A free-software license is a notice that grants the recipient of a piece of software extensive rights to modify and software distribu ...
, and is also available under a variety of
proprietary {{Short pages monitor