It was recommended by my software vendor that I use MyISAM and stay away from InnoDB.
InnoDB is the default storage engine on my box, but I have no InnoDB's at this time. Everything says MyISAM (in phpMyAdmin). Could I just reinstall SQL (with MyISAM) from scratch? Or will I need to backup and reload from dump?
If all your table is using MyISAM why would you want to reinstall mySQL. InnoDB and MyISAM engine are default. Leaving InnoDB does not hurt performance.
Innodb is not a bad engine, it is just been use for different application. Application that need atomic transaction (Transaction safe) will need innodb engine to work. It is just trading safety with speed.
If all of your databases are already MyISAM, and your MySQL install obvioulsy already supports MyISAM, do you realize that you don't need to reinstall MySQL?
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I'm guessing the engineer was almost as clueless as me!
I'd told the guy up front that they were all MyISAM when he asked. He then told me "stay away from InnoDB" (if I wasn't using it already) and gave me a custom my.ini after looking at my file. MySQL would not start with his config. He then was having me to comment/remove lines pertaining to InnoDB. Still wouldn't restart, and he stopped responding.
I'm a newbie (as if you didn't figure that out already ). And I remember that being one of the choice given by the installer. He made it seem like a serious thing. So that was my rational.
The server is fine. And I'm more than happy not to fix what ain't broke!