11 FAQs About MySQL Hosting
The best MySQL hosting empowers small businesses to compete with enterprise organizations by running websites and mobile applications with advanced database support.
Managed database installation on web servers is a key component of a shared hosting plan; developers build apps with PHP, Python, Ruby, ASP.NET, and other programming languages using MySQL as a free and open-source database solution.
Combining MySQL with Softaculous on cPanel offers 400+ web development scripts.
The inclusion of a free MySQL database option on shared Linux hosting platforms allowed developers to create more advanced web and mobile applications. SQL databases are compatible across multiple programming frameworks — unlocking dynamic content.
Interested? Read on as we answer some of the most commonly asked questions we encounter about MySQL.
1. What is MySQL Hosting?
MySQL is the world’s most popular relational database management system that utilizes Structured Query Language as a protocol for I/O transfer requests, table management, and information storage.
A Swedish team of developers originally released MySQL, which is written in C and C++, under a GNU General Public License in 1995.
As MySQL grew to disrupt established enterprise database products on open-source fundamentals, low-cost web hosting companies worldwide increasingly adopted the technology as a key enabler of web apps.
Those wary of licensing issues can use MariaDB and Percona Server, which are MySQL project forks that offer similar functionality to the database. PostgreSQL hosting offers more advanced functionality for larger, more complex data.
2. Why Should I Use a MySQL Database?
A relational database like MySQL stores structured information in tables to facilitate the definition of data formats with processing, functions, and views that are not possible with traditional file storage techniques.
Combining SQL with other programming languages enables server-side processing that is essential for the functioning of cloud software.
A free database service is considered a vital aspect of any web hosting provider, and the clear industry leader for open-source web scripts in 2022 is still the MySQL database platform.
Top Benefits of MySQL:
- On-demand scalability with efficient data storage
- Data security, especially for transactional processing used in online stores
- High-performance storage-engine framework and memory caches
- Low cost of ownership with open-source downloads, dependable service, and easy administration
Free, open-source licensing of the database framework is a major reason millions of website owners and business organizations choose MySQL.
Opting to design your site through a website builder will typically remove any need to oversee a database, as the software will take care of any MySQL needs in the background.
3. How Much Should a MySQL Hosting Service Cost?
Ninety percent of all websites can be hosted on a budget cPanel plan that costs less than $5 per month.
Many of these shared Linux hosting plans include a MySQL database server with support for unlimited databases, disk space, and bandwidth for web traffic.
|Shared hosting||VPS or Cloud hosting||Dedicated hosting|
|$1.50 to $5 per month||$5 to $120+ per month||$80 to $300+ per month|
Sure, you might be able to find free MySQL hosting from several providers, but we strongly recommend finding an affordable plan from a trustworthy hosting provider — you’ll unlock tons of extra features and peace of mind with 24/7 customer support.
For a single domain name with MySQL hosting, costs can be as low as $1.99 per month with a plan from iPage.
Hostinger offers unlimited databases on their plans for $1.99 per month with tons of room to grow, while Web Hosting Hub concentrates on high-impact shared hosting plans.
If you use Docker and container virtualization with VPS hosting, expect to pay $5 to $120 per month depending on the configuration and brand for custom web application support.
Managed VPS plans include options for cPanel, Plesk, or Webuzo administration and automated MySQL software upgrades.
MySQL hosting on public cloud platforms with Kubernetes, AWS EC2, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure can cost millions of dollars annually for the world’s largest sites.
Web traffic, managed security, platform innovation, and web server hardware processing requirements are the main aspects contributing to MySQL web hosting costs.
4. How Do I Choose the Best MySQL Host?
Unless you pay for a dedicated physical server, a shared hosting plan should run your website database, script processing files, and storage on infrastructure mirrored across multiple datacenters with load balancing for best MySQL performance.
A shared hosting provider’s high availability database management system can support millions of domains on a single platform.
Here are some of the most-important features to consider when searching for MySQL web hosting:
- Room for multiple or unlimited databases
- SSD storage and unlimited bandwidth
- Modern PHP support and updates
- Support for cPanel and phpMyAdmin
- Free website transfer and data migration
- Strong money-back and uptime guarantees
- Free domain name and SSL certificate
For the best MySQL hosting, look for a hosting company investing in datacenter innovation and SSD storage.
Managed database services provide extra security and automated platform updates that can save valuable time in system administration for small businesses, ecommerce stores, or blog publishers.
5. Which Hosts Offer Unlimited MySQL Databases?
Many low-cost providers offer unlimited MySQL database hosting options on shared Linux plans with cPanel.
With low-cost hosting platforms, cPanel offers the MySQL Database Wizard that allows admins to create new databases and assign users or permissions.
Creating a MySQL database can be done via software installation scripts or using the phpMyAdmin utility.
Some of the best budget web hosting plans with unlimited MySQL databases are:
- Bluehost — $2.95 per month
- Hostinger — $1.99 per month
- A2 Hosting — $2.99 per month
- SiteGround — $2.99 per month
- HostGator — $2.64 per month
- InMotion Hosting — $2.29 per month
With many of these plans, you’ll get a free website transfer, and modern, high-performance hardware. For example, A2 Hosting’s Turbo Server configuration touts 20-times-faster performance than many other low-cost competitors.
With VPS plans, options for managed and unmanaged platforms support both MySQL and MS SQL depending on the operating system. And, you’ll have much more room and control over database configuration.
With managed VPS plans, admins have the choice of cPanel, Plesk, Webuzo, and other utilities for web server and database management.
If you are using Docker, the MySQL layer is installed as part of the complete web server stack in a single container image, but you will be responsible for maintaining the security upgrades and service patches for all layers of the installation.
Managed database hosting plans provide the regular updating of web server security frameworks as soon as they are released publicly.
6. What is the Difference Between MySQL and SQL Server?
Know how all squares are rectangles but not all rectangles are squares? Same with MySQL and SQL.
Remember, SQL is the programming language behind the MySQL database system — similar to how PHP powers WordPress, for instance.
Just as PHP also powers the likes of Joomla, Drupal, and countless other applications, SQL also contributes to other database platforms.
Microsoft produces at least 12 versions of SQL Server for several business-oriented and web development use cases.
The closed-source aspect of MS SQL Server signifies a major difference with the largely open source MySQL.
Differences between MySQL and SQL Server:
- Licensing: The core version of MySQL is available as a free, open-source product. Oracle produces proprietary versions. MS SQL is only available commercially via Microsoft.
- Operating system: Not surprisingly, SQL Server primarily runs on Windows server platforms, while MySQL can be found on Linux, macOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, and Windows stacks.
- Storage engine support: MySQL allows users to employ a wide range of storage engines, while MS SQL only offers one.
Because both SQL Server and MySQL are relational databases, however, they share a few common features:
Similarities between MySQL and SQL Server:
- Scalability and performance: Both are as efficient handling small-scale projects as they are for bigger ones.
- Multi-database support: Users can host many databases under a single hostname on one server.
- Parameters: Both use foreign and primary key constraints to define tabular relationships.
- Index usage: Both use indexes to optimize performance and to sort data.
Many developers choose to specialize in one system or the other because of the differences in underlying architecture and related features.
Confirm the MySQL version or MS SQL compatibility or if there are options for multiple DB versions in the configuration settings of your web host.
A database management system is a major investment for large corporations. Because of Oracle’s move to license MySQL Enterprise Edition, many developers have shifted to the fully open source MariaDB.
Following the success of Amazon Web Services DynamoDB, many other companies have transitioned to NoSQL solutions, of which MongoDB is currently one of the most popular. (NoSQL still uses SQL, it stands for not only SQL.)
7. What is MySQL Workbench?
Built to provide all of the components required for deploying to a MySQL database server, MySQL Workbench is one of the premier tools for SQL database analytics.
Flowcharts and graphs in MySQL Workbench make it easier to visualize relational database metrics, analytics, and reports for better software runtime management in production.
You can also use MySQL Workbench to migrate databases from other legacy formats or to orchestrate integration with third-party caching apps like Redis.
MySQL Workbench integrates with Microsoft Azure and Visual Studio to meet complex developer requirements for scripting across programming languages.
Using this framework, developers can create a MySQL database table, insert data from forms or queries, transfer remote data from APIs for disk space, or update and delete data that is already stored in tables.
For legacy enterprise software modernization, a large number of conversion utilities for MySQL Workbench can assist teams in refactoring legacy code.
Doing so can make database-driven applications cloud-native, portable, and compliant with contemporary industry legislation for data privacy.
8. Should I Use phpMyAdmin or MySQL Workbench?
MySQL Workbench is generally more popular in enterprise programming teams, while phpMyAdmin is more commonly used in the open-source development community.
Most of the essential features for database management are available in both platforms, with phpMyAdmin having the advantage of being used through a web browser interface.
WordPress, Drupal, and other open-source CMS platforms working on LAMP can use phpMyAdmin to manage the tables of their databases or export backup files.
Strong MySQL support can make a big difference when identifying high-quality WordPress hosting solutions; conversely, free hosting services often support outdated MySQL versions.
Many scripts offer modules that will provide an hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly backup of your database for storage or archiving.
Website owners can use MySQL database backup files to transfer websites and mobile applications between hosting service environments using phpMyAdmin or other tools.
The inclusion of phpMyAdmin with most LAMP stack installations makes it much more popular than MySQL Workbench for an Oracle database with more complex licensing and usage requirements.
Make sure your plan offers a free SSL certificate for managing phpMyAdmin connections on domains securely.
9. How Can I Find My Database Server IP Address?
If you are working from a developer desktop workstation using MySQL Workbench with remote access, you may need to connect to your database hardware using the web server IP address.
An IP address, or Internet Protocol address, is a unique number assigned to all internet-connected devices, including servers, printers, routers, modems, and smart appliances like refrigerators and thermostats.
These numbers enable the devices to identify and communicate with each other on an internal or external network, and there are several ways to discover the critical information.
Option 1: Check your web hosting account information
Most web hosting companies running cPanel provide the IP address of the account in the administration panel. If you are using a VPS or dedicated server, the IP address may be included in your registration email.
Option 2: Look up your DNS information online
To find the IP address of your domain on a web host, head toward a lookup service like What is My IP and use the diagnostics information to configure your settings.
This can be easier and more extensive than searching through the information provided by a web hosting company for VPS or cloud server administration.
Option 3: Use the command line
Windows and Linux users can also use the ipconfig command in Windows or Linux by making an SSH connection to the web server that the database is hosted on and querying the hardware.
If you are working on a local development machine with a MySQL database, the ipconfig command will identify the IP address of the server, with XAMPP and WAMP Server tools.
Linux users can also use the ping command to locate a web server’s IP address. Windows users should use the tracert command.
10. How Do I Set Up a Remote MySQL Connection?
Whether you are managing your MySQL database hosting with Workbench, phpMyAdmin, cPanel, or another utility, there are you have different options for creating users with a particular set of permissions.
Hosting providers often put databases and web servers on the same machine within their datacenter for simplicity.
However, many organizations are increasingly opting for more distributed environments that separate databases and web applications. This infrastructure provides extra performance and stability benefits by avoiding a single point of failure.
To coordinate and operate this type of environment, though, you’ll need to learn how to manage and connect to remote resources.
MySQL automatically listens for local connections, so you’ll likely need to enable external connections.
Enable remote connections in cPanel:
- Log into cPanel, scroll to the Databases area and click on the Remote MySQL icon.
- In the Add Access Host field, add the IP address of the device that will be connecting to the MySQL server database.
- Alternatively, use a wildcard address using % or 0.0.0.0 to open remote access to a wider pool of users.
- Click Add Host to save and add the IP address to the access list.
Set up remote access from the command line:
- Open your mysqld.cnf file with the
sudo nano /etc/mysql/mysql.conf.d/mysqld.cnfcommand.
- Locate the bind-address information. By default, MySQL is set to the localhost at 127.0.0.1. Edit the IP address to reflect the remote device or a wildcard.
- Save and exit the file, then apply changes by restarting MySQL service:
sudo systemctl restart mysql
Assuming your MySQL server is protected with a firewall, you’ll likely need to open the default port 3306 to allow traffic. The steps and commands to accomplish this will depend on your operating system.
From here, you should be able to set up and manage remote MySQL user accounts and database connections from any remote endpoint using unique login credentials.
MySQL Workbench users can more easily support remote users with the Setup New Connection Form panel.
Make sure to consider the security of the connections through VPN encryption, strong passwords, and sandbox environments with version control when managing live code in production teams.
11. How Should I Get Started With a MySQL Server Hosting Provider?
Depending on the size of your website or mobile application, you can host your data using either shared or dedicated server resources for your database service.
A shared Linux or Windows hosting account comes with preinstalled support for MySQL database usage, with or without a website builder. The hosting company’s datacenter engineers will manage overall security and updates.
We especially love A2 Hosting, Liquid Web, Web Hosting Hub, and InMotion Hosting for a wide variety of projects — particularly if you need powerful WordPress hosting support.
Developers can use cPanel hosting with the MySQL Database Wizard and phpMyAdmin for the easiest way to manage MySQL hosting projects.
Power users can host their apps on public cloud resources with MySQL cluster servers like AWS EC2, Azure, or Kubernetes options for high availability requirements.
Choose a cheap web host for MySQL database support, along with unlimited bandwidth and domains using shared Linux servers and a free SSL certificate for less than $5 per month.
Ultimately, choose a web hosting provider with managed infrastructure for MySQL database applications that best matches the budget, scale, and development pipeline of your projects.