Mysql is a good database for common use. But if we deal with high volume systems where you need to speed up data retrieval significantly and speed up your website in general, search engine Sphinx will work the best.
Why to choose Sphinx over mysql? Because the sphinx algorithms are built in a way that the data fetched from sphinx index works hundreds or even thousands times faster than the data from the mysql table.
Sphinx search is a search engine which works in autonomous mode and is well connected with mysql. Search engine Sphinx provides an excellent search and indexing performance. Sphinx is a multifunctional system which allows to work with a great number of documents. This search engine is used to work with attributes, documents and string fields.
To process requests sphinx search uses certain index files. In order to index files you should install a data source, after which the ‘indexer’ programme is started. There is one more feature of Sphinx - using the index files of present time, which can be dynamically renewed, just losing very little effectiveness.
We can make some conclusions from the things said above: you can speed up your website and improve productivity using Sphinx, but not mysql. Sphinx search is excellent for searches with tables with statistics. However, for those tables which are frequently updated simple index files shouldn’t be used. It is better to create delta-index or real-time index and still in both cases you will have to sacrifice productivity.
Replacing mysql with the search engine sphinx is not the easiest task, but at the same time it is not the most difficult one to refuse the useful instrument. If you need to seriously speed up the search or speed up your website as a whole, you’d better think of changing mysql for Sphinx, even in the case if you don’t use the smart search.