This book is divided into six major sections:
Part I: Introduction This section describes how to get the most from this book, its structure and examples, and MySQL's architecture, as well as how to set up an optimization environment.
Part II: Advanced Database Design Concepts Your MySQL solution is only as solid and responsive as the database design upon which it rests. This section explores how to choose the correct options when designing your tables, the impact of constraints on response, the excellent diagnostics offered by the MySQL optimizer, and how to leverage indexes for exceptional performance.
Part III: Optimizing Application Code Your applications will likely interact with MySQL through one or more programming/scripting languages, even if it's just SQL. For that reason, this section examines how to write the most efficient SQL, as well as special considerations when using popular programming technologies, such as Java, C, ODBC, Perl, and so on. Because newer versions of MySQL offer stored procedures and triggers, this section also looks at how to make these exciting new technologies as speedy as possible.
Part IV: Optimizing and Tuning the MySQL Engine Administrators have dozens of choices to make when setting up and maintaining their MySQL environments. These choices range from engine and operating system parameters to disk management and bulk data operations. This section is devoted to helping these administrators make intelligent decisions when confronted with these situations.
Part V: Distributed Computing Replication and clustering are two key MySQL technologies for spreading your processing load among multiple computers. This section of the book examines when to deploy these powerful capabilities, as well as how to tune them for optimal performance.
Part VI: Case Studies The final section of this book ties the information found in the earlier chapters together in a series of multidimensional, real-world case studies.
Whether you choose to read all sections will likely be determined by your MySQL-oriented responsibility. For example, if you are an application developer, it's likely that you'll focus on Parts I, II, III, and V; you are probably not going to spend much time on Part IV's engine configuration. However, if you are tasked with tuning the database engine or the operating system, Part IV will be of supreme interest to you. In any case, the optimization techniques and examples have been purposely designed to be as independent of each other as possible.