When comparing MySQL vs MariaDB, the Slant community recommends MariaDB for most people. In the question“What are the best relational databases?” MariaDB is ranked 3rd while MySQL is ranked 4th. The most important reason people chose MariaDB is:
e.g. GIS since 5.3
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Multiple third-party tools that help working with MySQL
Since MySQL is one of the most popular relational databases, maybe the most popular, there exist many third-party tools and applications that help developers to use MySQL in their development.
Pro Easy to start working with
Because of it's popularity there are a lot of tutorials and guides out there that help developers install and work with MySQL. The installation process itself is not very hard and there are multiple powerful GUI tools that make it extremely easy to work with MySQL for a beginner.
MySQL is made to handle a lot of data and to be used in large applications. This makes it extremely scalable and fast, even under a lot of workload.
Pro More cutting edge features
e.g. GIS since 5.3
Pro Truly open development community
All development decisions for MariaDB can be reviewed and debated on a public mailing list or in the public bug tracker. Contributing to MariaDB is easy and the patch flow is fully transparent and public. But it's not all about the code contribution either - MariaDB also has very active documentation efforts and other related things that help developers in their day-to-day database administration.
Pro Dynamic column support
MariaDB has dynamic column support which allows for some NoSQL type functionality. So one database interface can provide both SQL and NoSQL for different software development needs.
Con Error messages usually are not very detailed
When you are trying to do something in MySQL and something goes wrong it will simply give you an error message with an error code. Which does not say much about what went wrong unless you look it up online. This can be a little cumbersome during development.