MySQL is a very popular open source database.  In this project, we will use it to store the measured temperature values, which can then be retrieved by a web page.


Installing MySQL

Before we start, if you have not updated opkg in a while, you should probably do that first:


opkg update


Now on to the task at hand. Installing MySQL.  There is already an opkg package, so we’ll install that:


opkg install mysql5


This will download and install MySQL.  Unfortunately, if we try and fire up MySQL:


/etc/init.d/mysqld start


We will see an error:


/etc/init.d/mysqld: line 3: /etc/default/rcS: No such file or directory

BeagleBone - mysqld error.png

The fix to this issue is fairly easy.  We need to comment out that line 3 in the script:


vi /etc/init.d/mysqld

BeagleBone - mysqld comment out.png

Now when we try and fire up MySQL:


/etc/init.d/mysqld start


We are successful and we can log into MySQL:

BeagleBone - mysql prompt.png


At this point it might seem like time for celebration.  We have MySQL installed and are able to run it and log in.  Unfortunately, if we restart then when we log in again we will get an error stating:


Cannot make/remove an entry for the specified session.


This is really annoying since it won’t let you log in and fix the issue.  I had to resort to reimaging my SD card and trying again. (The steps are here, in case you have to do it as well.)


MySQL Configuration

To fix that issue, we need to make some more configuration changes.  First we need to remove some unnecessary links:


rm /etc/rc*/*mysqld

BeagleBone - remove mysql links.png

Now this prevents MySQL from starting at boot.  Since we want MySQL to start at boot, let’s see if we can fix that.  To do this, we need to create a new configuration file:


vi /lib/systemd/system/mysql.service


And put the following text in that file:



Description=MySQL database server




ExecStop=/bin/kill -15 $MAINPID






Now we can enable the MySQL service to start at boot and then start the MySQL service:


systemctl enable mysql.service

systemctl start mysql.service


Then we should be able to check the status of the service and make sure that it is running:


systemctl status mysql.service

BeagleBone - mysql service start.png

Now you should be able to restart without getting the log in error and MySQL should be running!


Installing MySQL Client Library

The last thing that we need to do is install the MySQL C programming client library:


opkg install libmysqlclient-dev


Now, let’s test to make sure that it installed correctly and works.  To do this, create small test script:


#include <mysql.h>

#include <stdio.h>


int main(void)


                printf(“MySQL client version: %s\n”, mysql_get_client_info());


return 0;



This will print out the version information for the MySQL client.  To build it type:


g++ test.cpp -o test -I/usr/include/mysql –lmysqlclient


And then to run it, type:



BeagleBone - test code build.png

Now MySQL should be installed on your BeagleBone and ready to use!




Next Article

In the next article, we will create a C program that will measure the temperature of the room.  It will then write the current temperature into the MySQL database.  Finally, we will create a web interface to retrieve and plot the measured temperatures of the room.