Website development and maintenance is a job that can be performed via a set of compulsory tools, amongst which the most important ones are a server and a database management system. You can get both of these with MySQL, a very fast, multi-platform and open-source database server.
What makes MySQL the go-to solution of most webmasters and site administrators is the multi-user access, the high level of connectivity and security and last, but not least, the amazing speed in handling huge amount of data. Being a relational database management system (RDBMS), it offers the means to create, access and maintain extremely large and sophisticated types of databases.
MySQL is not your regular software application, so its installation and setup require a fine dose of database and server knowledge. You will need to pay the most attention to that part of deployment related to the server side, because it will take more than a few clicks to adjust it to your purposes. There are two types of configuration you can choose from: standard (advised to be used on computers that don't already have a MySQL installation) and detailed, which is a more advanced and optimal way to deploy the server.
Needless to say, the second method will demand an increased effort from your side, for it will prompt you with a series of multi-choice steps that among other things, will allow you to select the database usage (multifunctional, transactional or non-transactional), to configure the InnoDB Tablespace Settings, the number of concurrent connections and the default character set. The last step to setting up MySQL is to modify the security settings, namely the root password that will protect your server and databases from being hi-jacked (you can also opt for an anonymous account, not recommendable though for obvious reasons).
There is no GUI to MySQL, but you can perform all the database operations from a set of command line tools. Still, if you're more comfortable with an interface, you can rely on a multitude of third-party tools also known as MySQL frontends. One quick suggestion is Oracle's MySQL Workbench, but you can also rely on applications such as Vfront or HeidiSQL, which are just-as-good choices.
On an ending note, MySQL stands as an extremely useful and effective solution in website administration. Together with other essential packages, such as Apache and PHP, it can be the solution to building and keeping alive heavy architectures, such as content management systems or blogging platforms.