17.3.2.5 Defining MySQL Cluster Data Nodes

The [ndbd] and [ndbd default] sections are used to configure the behavior of the cluster's data nodes.

There are many parameters which control buffer sizes, pool sizes, timeouts, and so forth. The only mandatory parameters are:

Most data node parameters are set in the [ndbd default] section. Only those parameters explicitly stated as being able to set local values are permitted to be changed in the [ndbd] section. Where present, HostName, Id and ExecuteOnComputer must be defined in the local [ndbd] section, and not in any other section of config.ini. In other words, settings for these parameters are specific to one data node.

For those parameters affecting memory usage or buffer sizes, it is possible to use K, M, or G as a suffix to indicate units of 1024, 1024×1024, or 1024×1024×1024. (For example, 100K means 100 × 1024 = 102400.) Parameter names and values are currently case-sensitive.

Identifying data nodes.  The Id value (that is, the data node identifier) can be allocated on the command line when the node is started or in the configuration file.

Data Memory, Index Memory, and String Memory

DataMemory and IndexMemory are [ndbd] parameters specifying the size of memory segments used to store the actual records and their indexes. In setting values for these, it is important to understand how DataMemory and IndexMemory are used, as they usually need to be updated to reflect actual usage by the cluster:

The following example illustrates how memory is used for a table. Consider this table definition:

CREATE TABLE example (
  a INT NOT NULL,
  b INT NOT NULL,
  c INT NOT NULL,
  PRIMARY KEY(a),
  UNIQUE(b)
) ENGINE=NDBCLUSTER;

For each record, there are 12 bytes of data plus 12 bytes overhead. Having no nullable columns saves 4 bytes of overhead. In addition, we have two ordered indexes on columns a and b consuming roughly 10 bytes each per record. There is a primary key hash index on the base table using roughly 29 bytes per record. The unique constraint is implemented by a separate table with b as primary key and a as a column. This other table consumes an additional 29 bytes of index memory per record in the example table as well 8 bytes of record data plus 12 bytes of overhead.

Thus, for one million records, we need 58MB for index memory to handle the hash indexes for the primary key and the unique constraint. We also need 64MB for the records of the base table and the unique index table, plus the two ordered index tables.

You can see that hash indexes takes up a fair amount of memory space; however, they provide very fast access to the data in return. They are also used in MySQL Cluster to handle uniqueness constraints.

Currently, the only partitioning algorithm is hashing and ordered indexes are local to each node. Thus, ordered indexes cannot be used to handle uniqueness constraints in the general case.

An important point for both IndexMemory and DataMemory is that the total database size is the sum of all data memory and all index memory for each node group. Each node group is used to store replicated information, so if there are four nodes with two replicas, there will be two node groups. Thus, the total data memory available is 2 × DataMemory for each data node.

It is highly recommended that DataMemory and IndexMemory be set to the same values for all nodes. Data distribution is even over all nodes in the cluster, so the maximum amount of space available for any node can be no greater than that of the smallest node in the cluster.

DataMemory and IndexMemory can be changed, but decreasing either of these can be risky; doing so can easily lead to a node or even an entire MySQL Cluster that is unable to restart due to there being insufficient memory space. Increasing these values should be acceptable, but it is recommended that such upgrades are performed in the same manner as a software upgrade, beginning with an update of the configuration file, and then restarting the management server followed by restarting each data node in turn.

Updates do not increase the amount of index memory used. Inserts take effect immediately; however, rows are not actually deleted until the transaction is committed.

Transaction parameters.  The next three [ndbd] parameters that we discuss are important because they affect the number of parallel transactions and the sizes of transactions that can be handled by the system. MaxNoOfConcurrentTransactions sets the number of parallel transactions possible in a node. MaxNoOfConcurrentOperations sets the number of records that can be in update phase or locked simultaneously.

Both of these parameters (especially MaxNoOfConcurrentOperations) are likely targets for users setting specific values and not using the default value. The default value is set for systems using small transactions, to ensure that these do not use excessive memory.

Transaction temporary storage.  The next set of [ndbd] parameters is used to determine temporary storage when executing a statement that is part of a Cluster transaction. All records are released when the statement is completed and the cluster is waiting for the commit or rollback.

The default values for these parameters are adequate for most situations. However, users with a need to support transactions involving large numbers of rows or operations may need to increase these values to enable better parallelism in the system, whereas users whose applications require relatively small transactions can decrease the values to save memory.

Scans and buffering.  There are additional [ndbd] parameters in the Dblqh module (in ndb/src/kernel/blocks/Dblqh/Dblqh.hpp) that affect reads and updates. These include ZATTRINBUF_FILESIZE, set by default to 10000 × 128 bytes (1250KB) and ZDATABUF_FILE_SIZE, set by default to 10000*16 bytes (roughly 156KB) of buffer space. To date, there have been neither any reports from users nor any results from our own extensive tests suggesting that either of these compile-time limits should be increased.

Logging and checkpointing.  The following [ndbd] parameters control log and checkpoint behavior.

Metadata objects.  The next set of [ndbd] parameters defines pool sizes for metadata objects, used to define the maximum number of attributes, tables, indexes, and trigger objects used by indexes, events, and replication between clusters. Note that these act merely as suggestions to the cluster, and any that are not specified revert to the default values shown.

Boolean parameters.  The behavior of data nodes is also affected by a set of [ndbd] parameters taking on boolean values. These parameters can each be specified as TRUE by setting them equal to 1 or Y, and as FALSE by setting them equal to 0 or N.

Controlling Timeouts, Intervals, and Disk Paging

There are a number of [ndbd] parameters specifying timeouts and intervals between various actions in Cluster data nodes. Most of the timeout values are specified in milliseconds. Any exceptions to this are mentioned where applicable.

Buffering and logging.  Several [ndbd] configuration parameters corresponding to former compile-time parameters were introduced in MySQL 4.1.5. These enable the advanced user to have more control over the resources used by node processes and to adjust various buffer sizes at need.

These buffers are used as front ends to the file system when writing log records to disk. If the node is running in diskless mode, these parameters can be set to their minimum values without penalty due to the fact that disk writes are faked by the NDB storage engine's file system abstraction layer.

Controlling log messages.  In managing the cluster, it is very important to be able to control the number of log messages sent for various event types to stdout. For each event category, there are 16 possible event levels (numbered 0 through 15). Setting event reporting for a given event category to level 15 means all event reports in that category are sent to stdout; setting it to 0 means that there will be no event reports made in that category.

By default, only the startup message is sent to stdout, with the remaining event reporting level defaults being set to 0. The reason for this is that these messages are also sent to the management server's cluster log.

An analogous set of levels can be set for the management client to determine which event levels to record in the cluster log.

Backup parameters.  The [ndbd] parameters discussed in this section define memory buffers set aside for execution of online backups.

Important

When specifying these parameters, the following relationships must hold true. Otherwise, the data node will be unable to start.

Note

To add new data nodes to a MySQL Cluster, it is necessary to shut down the cluster completely, update the config.ini file, and then restart the cluster (that is, you must perform a system restart). All data node processes must be started with the --initial option.

Beginning with MySQL Cluster NDB 7.0, it is possible to add new data node groups to a running cluster online; however, we do not plan to implement this change in MySQL 5.0.