MariaDB is a relational database that is a drop-in replacement for MySQL, from which it was forked in 2009 over concerns about its acquisition by Oracle Corporation after having been acquired by Sun Microsystems the previous year.
MariaDB is licensed under the open source GNU General Public License (GPL). Its lead developer/CTO is Michael “Monty” Widenius, was one of the founders of MySQL AB.
MariaDB has been gaining in popularity, fueled partly by a preference for the community driven model rather than the Oracle-owned version, since Oracle has its own flagship database. MariaDB is also considered better-performing. As development of MySQL and MariaDB diverged over the years, MariaDB now includes features not available in MySQL.