Installing MySQL 5.5.8 on Mac OS X Snow Leopard

Installing MySQL should be a no brainer on any operating system, especially with how mature of a product it is.  Apparently that assumption is incorrect.  I tried installing the most recent GA release of MySQL on my new Snow Leopard machine, and found I couldn’t start the blasted server.  I’ve become lazy the older I get – I don’t want to screw around with shell scripts, hacking this tweaking that.  If I’m provided a Mac-based installer I WANT IT TO WORK.  So, if you’re like me and are frustrated as all hell with not being able to get MySQL to start via System Preferences after installing the 64-bit version (maybe 32-bit as well), do the following:

  1. Drop into
  2. Type: sudo /Applications/ /usr/local/mysql/support-files/mysql.server
  3. Find the line starting with basedir and datadir and replace with:
  4. Save the file
  5. Start MySQL using the System Preferences pane button.

I’m amazed this is the fix and that the MySQL team overlooked the configuration change in their packaging.  Very irritating.  Enjoy.

11 thoughts on “Installing MySQL 5.5.8 on Mac OS X Snow Leopard

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention cheers Dave, managed to get it working with this fix --

  2. Thank you so much for this solution. It worked like a charm. I was going crazy searching every forum mentioning this issue to no avail. I posed your fix over on Apple’s discussion forum too so people there can benefit.


  3. Pingback: How to get MySQL, Ruby, RVM and Rails working in Snow Leopard – Freelance Web Designer Lee Munroe

  4. Job

    Amazing that something this simple fixed the problem, I had used a almost every sudo thing but nothing worked and this took me 2 seconds result!! Thanks!!


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