How to Temporarily Enable MySQL Server Query Logging

May 23, 2013

Recently while writing code against a development MySQL Database, I encountered the need to temporarily enable logging in MySQL to show me the last queries made by my application. I only needed to do this temporarily and did not want to mess with my my.cnf file, so the following steps came in handy.

While in MySQL with a privileged user do the following:

use mysql;
SET GLOBAL log_output = 'TABLE';
SET GLOBAL general_log = 'ON';

Then run this query in MySQL:

select * from general_log;

Alternatively you can do a running tail on the general_log.CSV outside of MySQL

tail -f /var/lib/mysql/mysql/general_log.CSV

To reset things back to normal you can just restart mysql. Hope this helps in your troubleshooting or application to database sleuthing.

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