How To Install MariaDB on Debian 10 / Debian 11

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In this tutorial, I’ll show you how you can install MariaDB database server on Debian 10 (Buster) / Debian 11 (Bullseye). MariaDB is a relational database management system forked from MySQL. MariaDB is fully open source and is released under the General Public License version 2.

There is no additional repository need for the installation of MariaDB database server on Debian 10 Buster. You just need to update system APT repositories and you’re set to go.

For Galera Cluster, use the guide on Setup MariaDB Galera Cluster on Debian

Step 1: Update Debian 10 / Debian 11 System

Run the following commands in your terminal to update system packages and repository content on your server.

sudo apt update && sudo apt -y upgrade

Step 2: Install MariaDB on Debian 10 / Debian 11

Next is to install MariaDB database server on Debian 10 Buster.

sudo apt -y install mariadb-server mariadb-client

When prompted to set the root password, provide the password and confirm.

The version of MariaDB installed as default is 10.x. This can be confirmed with:

$ apt policy mariadb-server
   Installed: 1:10.3.27-0+deb10u1
   Candidate: 1:10.3.27-0+deb10u1
   Version table:
  *** 1:10.3.27-0+deb10u1 500
         500 buster/main amd64 Packages
         500 apricot/main i386 Packages
         100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

The service name for MariaDB Database server is mysql or mariadb.

$ systemctl status mariadb
 ● mariadb.service - MariaDB 10.3.13 database server
    Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/mariadb.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
    Active: active (running) since Fri 2019-03-29 10:31:19 UTC; 6min ago
      Docs: man:mysqld(8)
  Main PID: 14616 (mysqld)
    Status: "Taking your SQL requests now…"
     Tasks: 30 (limit: 1148)
    Memory: 51.8M
    CGroup: /system.slice/mariadb.service
            └─14616 /usr/sbin/mysqld
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: performance_schema
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: Phase 6/7: Checking and upgrading tables
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: Running 'mysqlcheck' with connection arguments: --socket='/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock' --host='lo
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: # Connecting to localhost…
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: # Disconnecting from localhost…
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: Processing databases
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: information_schema
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: performance_schema
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: Phase 7/7: Running 'FLUSH PRIVILEGES'
 Mar 29 10:31:20 deb10 /etc/mysql/debian-start[14653]: OK

Step 3: Secure MariaDB Database Server

The last step is securing the database server. This includes:

  • Setting strong root password
  • Removing anonymous users
  • Disabling remote login for root user.
  • Removing test database and access to it

Run the command below to secure your database server.

$ sudo mysql_secure_installation
 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!

Update authentication plugin to allow root password authentication as normal user.

$ sudo mysql -u root
UPDATE mysql.user SET plugin = 'mysql_native_password' WHERE User = 'root';

Test MariaDB database installation.

$ mysql -u root -p
 Enter password: 
 Welcome to the MariaDB monitor.  Commands end with ; or \g.
 Your MariaDB connection id is 67
 Server version: 10.3.13-MariaDB-1 Debian buildd-unstable
 Copyright (c) 2000, 2018, Oracle, MariaDB Corporation Ab and others.

Confirm version from MySQL CLI:

MariaDB [(none)]> SELECT VERSION();
 | VERSION()         |
 | 10.3.13-MariaDB-1 |
 1 row in set (0.001 sec)
 MariaDB [(none)]> QUIT 

That’s all. Enjoy running the MariaDB Database server on Debian 10 (Buster).


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A systems engineer with excellent skills in systems administration, cloud computing, systems deployment, virtualization, containers, and a certified ethical hacker.