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I want a standard way to locate mysql config directories, On linux this becomes a little easy with mysqld --help --verbose, but I am still little puzzled how to get the install directories ( that's where I suppose the my.ini file should be). I would most appreciate if we could get these search paths using a sql query statement ( show ??)

Update: I am specifically looking for a way to do it on Windows. I know so far that my.ini is kept in windows MySQL install dir, but through query how do I ascertain this location?

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Which distribution? – Hyppy Mar 23 '11 at 18:13
Wouldn't mysqld.exe --help --verbose give you the same information on windows? – 3molo Mar 24 '11 at 8:10
@3molo ..yes mysqld.exe --help --verbose gives you the same results, although locating the mysqld.exe is again pain in windows if its not already on system path. I have found one way to do it. Lookup the registry entry for MySQL, its in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\MySQL AB\MySQL Server N.n (Where N.n is the version), in it the Location key gives you the install path for MySQL install directory. This way I can find the options file for all instances installed. – Hemanshu Mar 25 '11 at 4:15

What about

# whereis my.cnf
my: /etc/my.cnf /etc/my.stopwords

(tested this on RHEL 5)

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