Securing MySQL installations with mysql_secure_installation

MyQSL comes with several utilities to configure and manage a database platform. One useful utility is the mysql_secure_installation script, which limits access to the ‘root’ account, removes the test database, and removes anonymous accounts. To use the mysql_secure_installation script, you can run it with the path to your my.cnf:

$ mysql_secure_installation –defaults =my.cnf

NOTE: RUNNING ALL PARTS OF THIS SCRIPT IS RECOMMENDED FOR ALL MySQL
      SERVERS IN PRODUCTION USE!  PLEASE READ EACH STEP CAREFULLY!


In order to log into MySQL to secure it, we'll need the current
password for the root user.  If you've just installed MySQL, and
you haven't set the root password yet, the password will be blank,
so you should just press enter here.

-n 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 MySQL
root user without the proper authorisation.

You already have a root password set, so you can safely answer 'n'.

-n Change the root password? [Y/n] 
n
 ... skipping.

By default, a MySQL installation has an anonymous user, allowing anyone
to log into MySQL 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.

-n 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.

-n Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] 
y
 ... Success!

By default, MySQL 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.

-n 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.

-n Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] 
y
 ... Success!

Cleaning up...

All done!  If you've completed all of the above steps, your MySQL
installation should now be secure.

Thanks for using MySQL!

The ‘-n’ that is printed looks to be a bug, but reviewing the ‘user’ table indicates that the script worked as expected.

2 thoughts on “Securing MySQL installations with mysql_secure_installation”

  1. In bash, “echo -n” is used to suppress printing a newline after the text. In this script, it would mean that the user response (y/n) would stay on the same line as the question being asked. The regular Bourne shell does not understand the “-n” parameter and just prints it.

  2. Hi Martin,

    I took this example from a Solaris host, and the echo that resides in /usr/bin doesn’t understand the ‘-n’ option:

    $ /usr/bin/echo -n foo
    -n foo

    The one in /usr/ucb does though:

    $ /usr/ucb/echo -n foo
    foo

    I think the MySQL installation process needs to be fixed to use /usr/ucb/echo if it detects a Solaris host. Otherwise, /usr/bin/echo should suffice.

    – Ryan

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