Have a weird question / (bug?) here. Using PHP My Admin I installed via apt-get on Ubuntu 13.10

Versions are as follows:

  • Server version: 5.5.35-0ubuntu0.13.10.2 - (Ubuntu)
  • Apache/2.4.6 (Ubuntu)
  • Database client version: libmysql - 5.5.35
  • PHP extension: mysqli Documentation
  • PHPMyAdmin Version information: 4.0.6deb1

Under the Stats page it is showing the following:

  • Questions since startup: 2,144
  • per hour: 405
  • per minute: 7

Here is the weird thing - about 5 minutes ago it said 5000+ questions since start-up.

I am the only user with access to the database besides the "WWW User" I have created for my PHP pages. My web server is not open to the public - port 80 is blocked on my router, and I have password protection set up in my Apache2.conf file. In order to access my LAMP server on the fly I use ConnectBot for Android to tunnel port 8080 to my computer's port 80. I am not running 405 queries per hour! I have only probably ran at most 20 on the database in the last hour including queries made by PHP scripts. The only way someone other than me could be accessing my LAMP server is if they were using a wifi sniffer and cloning their MAC address to bypass MAC filtering to get past my router - but my router shows nothing unusual connected.

Additionally - it is showing the following, which really has me concerned:

show binlogs    73  13.8    3.40
show tables 34  6.4     1.59
show variables  28  5.3     1.31
show master status  27  5.1     1.26
show status 27  5.1     1.26
show slave status   27  5.1     1.26

With the exception of show tables, I did not know these commands existed. I have not ran a show tables command in several days.

Is someone hacking my database? Or is PHPMyAdmin reporting inaccurate information?

  • Have you considerer that PMA performs a lot of queries to show you the nice little GUI? ;) Feb 25, 2014 at 12:10
  • It sounds like you have some form of monitoring turned on and it is checking on Replication -- 3 of the SHOWs relate to replication.
    – Rick James
    Jun 7, 2015 at 14:36

2 Answers 2


You may have been unaware of this, but everything and its grandmother done in MySQL is a question.

In light of this, the real question is : To mysqld, what is a Question ?

According to the MySQL Documentation on Questions:

The number of statements executed by the server. This includes only statements sent to the server by clients and not statements executed within stored programs, unlike the Queries variable. This variable does not count COM_PING, COM_STATISTICS, COM_STMT_PREPARE, COM_STMT_CLOSE, or COM_STMT_RESET commands.

Anything you issue for the sake of running queries or just checking a status of some kind is a Question. Even checking how many questions in your session is itself a Question. Here is proof: (I will connect to MySQL 5.6.14 for Windows and ask for Questions in my session):

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.2.9200] (c) 2012 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Welcome to the MySQL monitor.  Commands end with ; or \g.
Your MySQL connection id is 2
Server version: 5.6.14 MySQL Community Server (GPL)

Copyright (c) 2000, 2013, Oracle and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.

Oracle is a registered trademark of Oracle Corporation and/or its
affiliates. Other names may be trademarks of their respective

Type 'help;' or '\h' for help. Type '\c' to clear the current input statement.

mysql> show status like 'Questions';
| Variable_name | Value |
| Questions     | 3     |
1 row in set (0.11 sec)

mysql> show status like 'Questions';
| Variable_name | Value |
| Questions     | 4     |
1 row in set (0.00 sec)

mysql> show status like 'Questions';
| Variable_name | Value |
| Questions     | 5     |
1 row in set (0.00 sec)


This is normal to expect, so there is really nothing to worry about.


Is someone hacking my database?

No, you are not being hacked.

Is PHPMyAdmin reporting inaccurate information?

PHPMyAdmin asks mysqld Questions all day long. The result is that it just runs up the global count (As seen from SHOW GLOBAL STATUS;). I wrote an answer to a post in ServerFault about 2.5 years ago entitled 1 billion mysql queries in 24 days? Can something be wrong?. I attributed the runaway stats to monitoring then, and I still strongly assert this now.

  • You should use MySQL command line client and execute these queries say every 1,5 minute and observe the values.

show global status like 'Connections';

show global status like> 'Aborted_connects';

Make sure that you have Connections value is as expected and there should not be 'Aborted_connects'

  • If 'Aborted_connets' are increasing then you should set log_warnings=2 in my.cnf and see error log entries.

  • Execute Show Full Processlist; and store the result in a file and collect the output for ~30 minutes, later observe the output queries, which user, host, etc.. are executing those queries and make sure that they are from known sources.

  • You can enable General_log as well to check all queries being executed on a server, later you should turn it OFF to avoid server overhead.

I hope these methods helps you to find out root cause.

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