Addressing MySQL Error 1151 – SQLSTATE: HY000 (ER_TOO_MANY_DELAYED_THREADS): Strategies for Managing Delayed Threads

MySQL Error 1151 – SQLSTATE: HY000 (ER_TOO_MANY_DELAYED_THREADS) is encountered when there are too many threads in a “delayed” state. This state is typically associated with the INSERT DELAYED statement, which is specific to the MyISAM storage engine and has been deprecated as of MySQL 5.6 and removed in MySQL 5.7.

Understanding the Error

The INSERT DELAYED statement was used to queue inserts into a table, allowing the client to continue without waiting for the insert to complete. The server manages a separate thread for each table that has outstanding INSERT DELAYED statements. If the number of such threads exceeds the server’s configured limit, Error 1151 is triggered.

Diagnosing the Problem

To diagnose this error, you should:

  1. Determine the number of delayed threads currently running.
  2. Check the configuration setting for the maximum allowed delayed threads.

You can get the current count of delayed threads with the following command:

SHOW STATUS LIKE 'Delayed_insert_threads';

You can also check the maximum allowed delayed threads with:

SHOW VARIABLES LIKE 'max_delayed_threads';

Fixing the Error

Here are some solutions to resolve Error 1151:

Example 1: Adjusting max_delayed_threads

If you are still using a version of MySQL that supports INSERT DELAYED, you can increase the max_delayed_threads variable in the MySQL configuration file (usually my.cnf or my.ini):

max_delayed_threads = 20  # Adjust to a reasonable value based on your needs

After making changes, restart the MySQL server.

Example 2: Avoiding INSERT DELAYED

Since INSERT DELAYED is deprecated and removed in later versions, consider avoiding its use altogether. Replace INSERT DELAYED statements with regular INSERT statements to prevent this error:

INSERT INTO your_table_name (col1, col2) VALUES (val1, val2);

Example 3: Monitoring and Managing Client Connections

If you have a high volume of inserts and are experiencing this error, monitor your client connections and manage how often they are inserting data. Batch inserts or using a queue system outside of MySQL might be a more efficient approach.

Example 4: Upgrading MySQL Version

Consider upgrading to a newer version of MySQL where INSERT DELAYED is no longer supported. This will naturally eliminate the error and encourage the use of more efficient insert patterns.


MySQL Error 1151 is a sign that your application may be relying on deprecated features or that you need to adjust your server settings. By moving away from INSERT DELAYED and optimizing your insert operations, you can avoid this error and improve the overall performance of your MySQL server. Always be mindful of the version-specific features and plan for upgrades as needed to stay current with best practices.

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