Grant Permissions to a MySQL User on Linux via Command Line

MySQL via Command Line 102: Basic User Interaction
Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended for granting a MySQL user permissions on Linux via the command line
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed CentOS 6.5 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Login to MySQL

First we’ll login to the MySQL server from the command line with the following command:

mysql -u root -p

In this case, I’ve specified the user root with the -u flag, and then used the -p flag so MySQL prompts for a password. Enter your current password to complete the login.

If you need to change your root (or any other) password in the database, then follow this tutorial on changing a password for MySQL via the command line.

You should now be at a MySQL prompt that looks very similar to this:

mysql>

If you haven’t yet created a MySQL user, please refer to our tutorial on creating a MySQL user.

Grant Permissions to MySQL User

The basic syntax for granting permissions is as follows:

GRANT permission ON database.table TO 'user'@'localhost';

Here is a short list of commonly used permissions :

  • ALL – Allow complete access to a specific database. If a database is not specified, then allow complete access to the entirety of MySQL.
  • CREATE – Allow a user to create databases and tables.
  • DELETE – Allow a user to delete rows from a table.
  • DROP – Allow a user to drop databases and tables.
  • EXECUTE – Allow a user to execute stored routines.
  • GRANT OPTION – Allow a user to grant or remove another user’s privileges.
  • INSERT – Allow a user to insert rows from a table.
  • SELECT – Allow a user to select data from a database.
  • SHOW DATABASES- Allow a user to view a list of all databases.
  • UPDATE – Allow a user to update rows in a table.

Example #1: To grant CREATE permissions for all databases * and all tables * to the user we created in the previous tutorial, testuser , use the following command:

GRANT CREATE ON *.* TO 'testuser'@'localhost';

Using an asterisk (*) in the place of the database or table is a completely valid option, and implies all databases or all tables.

Example #2: To grant testuser the ability to drop tables in the specific database, tutorial_database , use the DROP permission:

GRANT DROP ON tutorial_database.* TO 'testuser'@'localhost';

When finished making your permission changes, it’s good practice to reload all the privileges with the flush command!

FLUSH PRIVILEGES;

View Grants for MySQL User

After you’ve granted permissions to a MySQL user you’ll probably want to double check them. Use the following command to check the grants for testuser :

SHOW GRANTS FOR 'testuser'@'localhost';

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