I understand that MariaDB forked a version of MySQl but is is very confusing to still deal my.cnf, /usr/share/mysql , /usr/lib64/mysql and so on? Are there any reasons, why they did not change the naming on most of those folders? This had been very confusing to me and that is the reason why i have not migrated to it yet. It's either you are MariaDB or MySQL but don't try to be both.
closed as primarily opinion-based by mustaccio, Andriy M, Marian, Philᵀᴹ, Max Vernon Sep 14 '16 at 17:31
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MariaDB is a forked version on MySQL that attempts to be a drop-in replacement. A good drop-in replacement should work without requiring a lot of configuration and data file movement. By using the same directories and filenames, it is far simpler to install as a replacement for MySQL.
I haven't tried MariaDB, but I would expect to be able to install it test it, and decide if I want to revert back to MySQL. While I would backup my databases, I don't expect to have to restore my data whichever option I pick.
It's to do with clients in all probability.
Many users are often fonder of, and more loyal to, their database clients than to their server.
If every file was renamed, those database clients wouldn't work with MariaDB.
In particular, it is very likely (you'd have to check source code to be sure on this one) that the excellent MySQL Workbench product would fail to work with MariaDB unless it kept the MySQL filenames.
Perfectly logical really - why would MySQL provide any help to their rivals by allowing their clients to work with different filenames? Now, MariaDB could use the GPL'd code to write their own Workbench, but many users are "set in their ways" with respect to clients.