Install MariaDB Databases on a FreeBSD 11 Unix Server

I‘m a new FreeBSD unix user. How can I install MariaDB database server on a FreeBSD unix based system?

MySQL is a high-speed, multi-threaded, multi-user and robust SQL database server. MariaDB is a database server that offers drop-in replacement functionality
for Oracle MySQL server. MariaDB is built by some of the original authors of MySQL, with assistance from the community. This page shows how to install MariaDB Databases on a FreeBSD 10/11 Unix Server.

How To Install MariaDB Databases on a FreeBSD

The procedure to install MariaDB server is as follows:

  1. Find MariaDB server package names.
  2. Install MariaDB server either using the ports or pkg command.
  3. Start MariaDB server
  4. Set root password for MariaDB server
  5. Create a database, user, and grant rights
  6. Open MariaDB ports using the firewall

Update all your ports

Make sure your ports are installed and up to date. I like to do:
# portsnap fetch update && portupgrade -a

FreeBSD MariaDB installation

To install MariaDB Server, MariaDB Client and MariaDB Scripts type the following commands.

A note about MySQL and MariaDB server together

You cannot run MariaDB and MySQL installed together. You will have deinstall one or the other and the clients if you have them. If you want to run them both, you
will need them to be jailed apart. If you are new it’s best to not think about this and run them one at a time focusing on learning one or the other. So for example if you have MySQL and want to install MariaDB you need to deinstall before installing. Check what version you are using by typing the command as root:
# pkg version | grep mysql
or as user or root you can type this command:
# mysql --version
or use pkg command:
# pkg info | grep mysql
Make sure you backup database before you uninstall mysql-server. To deinstall that:
# cd /usr/ports/databases/mysql57-server/ && make deinstall clean
# cd /usr/ports/databases/mysql57-client/ && make deinstall clean
# rm -rf /var/db/mysql/

or use pkg command to delete them:
# pkg remove mysql56-server mysql56-client
# rm -rf /var/db/mysql/

Find MariaDB server versions

Run pkg command:
# pkg search mariadb

FreeBSD install MariaDB server

To install the port, type and make sure you check what you want off in the configuration:
# cd /usr/ports/databases/mariadb103-server/
# make install clean

Or, to add the binary package using pkg command, run:
# pkg install databases/mariadb103-server

A not about installing MariaDB client only

MariaDB Client will be installed automatically. You should now check following options:

[X] THREADSAFE  Build thread-safe client
[X] SSL         Activate SSL support (yassl)

However, if you need MariaDB client on another FreeBSD server or jail or desktop system, run:
# cd /usr/ports/databases/mariadb103-client
# make install clean

# pkg install databases/mariadb103-client
Sample outputs:

FreeBSD 11 install mariadb client

How do I start MariaDB on boot?

Execute the sysrc command to enable MaraiDB server service on boot along with other options:
# sysrc mysql_enable=YES
# sysrc mysql_pidfile=/var/db/mysql/
# sysrc mysql_optfile=/usr/local/etc/my.cnf

How do I install MariaDB server configuration file?

MariaDB respects FreeBSD layout of file systems (and doesn’t check /etc and /etc/mysql for my.cnf. You will find the following default config files:
# ls -l /usr/local/share/mysql/my*.cnf
Sample outputs:

-rw-r--r--  1 root  wheel   4898 Nov 26 12:56 /usr/local/share/mysql/my-huge.cnf
-rw-r--r--  1 root  wheel  20418 Nov 26 12:56 /usr/local/share/mysql/my-innodb-heavy-4G.cnf
-rw-r--r--  1 root  wheel   4885 Nov 26 12:56 /usr/local/share/mysql/my-large.cnf
-rw-r--r--  1 root  wheel   4898 Nov 26 12:56 /usr/local/share/mysql/my-medium.cnf
-rw-r--r--  1 root  wheel   2824 Nov 26 12:56 /usr/local/share/mysql/my-small.cnf

You can use any one of the above file. I always start with a clean config file:
# vi /usr/local/etc/my.cnf
Here is my minimum my.cnf file:

## SERVER ##
datadir                         = /var/db/mysql
socket                          = /var/db/mysql/mysql.sock
pid-file                        = /run/mysql/
log-error                      = /var/db/mysql/mysql-error.log
log-queries-not-using-indexes  = 1
slow-query-log                 = 1
slow-query-log-file            = /var/db/mysql/mysql-slow.log

How do I start/stop/restart MariaDB on a FreeBSD 10/11?

To start the server you are going to type:
# service mysql-server start
You will see the following information when you start the server for the first time:

Fig.03 Starting the start for the first time

To stop the server you are going to type:
# service mysql-server stop
To restart the server you are going to type:
# service mysql-server restart
To see the server status you are going to type:
# service mysql-server status
You can also use the following commands for the same purpose:
## call rc.d script to control MariaDB server ##
/usr/local/etc/rc.d/mysql-server start
/usr/local/etc/rc.d/mysql-server stop
/usr/local/etc/rc.d/mysql-server restart
/usr/local/etc/rc.d/mysql-server status

Sample outputs:

Fig.04: Starting/Stopping MariaDB server on a FreeBSD 10

How do I set root user password for MariaDB?

You should create password for root user after MariaDB installation, enter:
# mysqladmin -S /var/db/mysql/mysql.sock -u root password YOURSECUREPASSWORD
Alternatively, I suggest that you can run the following command to set root password. This command will also give you the option of removing the test databases and anonymous user created by default. This is strongly recommended for production servers:
# ln -s /var/db/mysql/mysql.sock /tmp/
# /usr/local/bin/mysql_secure_installation

Sample outputs:

In order to log into MariaDB to secure it, we'll need the current
password for the root user.  If you've just installed MariaDB, and
you haven't set the root password yet, the password will be blank,
so you should just press enter here.
Enter current password for root (enter for none): 
OK, successfully used password, moving on...
Setting the root password ensures that nobody can log into the MariaDB
root user without the proper authorisation.
Set root password? [Y/n] y
New password: 
Re-enter new password: 
Password updated successfully!
Reloading privilege tables..
 ... Success!
By default, a MariaDB installation has an anonymous user, allowing anyone
to log into MariaDB without having to have a user account created for
them.  This is intended only for testing, and to make the installation
go a bit smoother.  You should remove them before moving into a
production environment.
Remove anonymous users? [Y/n] y
 ... Success!
Normally, root should only be allowed to connect from 'localhost'.  This
ensures that someone cannot guess at the root password from the network.
Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] y
 ... Success!
By default, MariaDB comes with a database named 'test' that anyone can
access.  This is also intended only for testing, and should be removed
before moving into a production environment.
Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n] y
 - Dropping test database...
 ... Success!
 - Removing privileges on test database...
 ... Success!
Reloading the privilege tables will ensure that all changes made so far
will take effect immediately.
Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] y
 ... Success!
Cleaning up...
All done!  If you've completed all of the above steps, your MariaDB
installation should now be secure.
Thanks for using MariaDB!

Remove file from /tmp/:
# rm /tmp/mysql.sock

How do I connect to MariaDB server?

mysql is a simple SQL shell that one can use to control mysql/mariadb server. The syntax is:

mysql -u user -p
mysql -h db-hostname-here -u user-name-here -p

How do I create MariaDB database and users?

First, login as root user:

mysql -u root -p mysql

Sample outputs:

Fig.05: Connecting to the server using mysql client

Create a new mysql database called foo. Type the following command at mysql> prompt:
MariaDB [mysql]>  CREATE DATABASE foo;

Create a new user called user1 for database called foo with a password called ‘hiddensecret’:

MariaDB [mysql]>  GRANT ALL ON foo.* TO user1@localhost IDENTIFIED BY 'hiddensecret';

How do I connect to MariaDB database foo using user1 account?

User user1 can connect to the foo database using the following shell command:
$ mysql -u user1 -p foo
$ mysql -u user1 -h your-mysql-server-host-name-here -p foo
Sample session:

Fig.06: Creating users and database on the MariaDB server

See “Mysql User Creation: Setting Up a New MySQL User Account” tutorial for more information.

How do I enable remote access to the MariaDB server?

Edit the my.cnf file, run:
# vi /usr/local/etc/my.cnf
Make sure line skip-networking is commented (or remove line) and add the following line in the [mysqld] section:


For example, if your MariaDB FreeBSD server IP is


Save and close the file. Restart the server:
# service mysql-server restart
Update your pf.conf file:

## allows mysql client from ##
pass in on $ext_if proto tcp from to any port 3306  flags S/SA synproxy state

Restart pf service and test connectivity from by typing any one of the following command:

# use nc for port testing ##
nc -z -w1 3306
# or old good telnet ##
echo X | telnet -e X 3306
telnet -e X 3306<<<"X"
## or use mysql client ##
mysql -h -u USER -p DB

How do I grant access to an existing database over the LAN based session?

Let us assume that you are always making connection from remote IP called for database called foo for user bar, To grant access to this IP address type the following command at MariaDB [mysql]> prompt for existing database, enter:

MariaDB [mysql]> update db set Host='' where Db='foo';
MariaDB [mysql]> update user set Host='' where user='bar';

See “How Do I Enable Remote Access To MySQL Database Server?” tutorial for more information.

How to open ports in a FreeBSD pf firewall

Add the following rule in your pf.conf file:

pass in on $ext_if proto tcp from any to any port 3306

OR only allow access from

pass in on $ext_if proto tcp from to any port 3306
This entry is 3 of 3 in the Nginx, MySQL, and PHP (FEMP) Stack on FreeBSD Tutorial series. Keep reading the rest of the series:
  1. FreeBSD Install Nginx Webserver Tutorial
  2. FreeBSD install PHP 7.2 with FPM for Nginx
  3. Install MariaDB Databases on a FreeBSD 11 Unix Server

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🐧 2 comments so far... add one

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2 comments… add one
  • Tausif Ahmad Jan 15, 2015 @ 8:13

    Thanks for sharing it’s really useful for me.


  • stephan Apr 25, 2015 @ 17:51

    Hi there
    I was trying to follow yur good looking dewscription but when I try install the mysql database i get the following message:
    pkg: /var/db/pkg wrong user or group ownership (expected 0/0 versus actual 80/80
    I think it is a permission problem but I am logged as root.
    Thanks in advance

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