I develop on a Mac. I love my Mac. I use Mamp Pro for my *amp stack. After beating my head against the wall for a couple of hours, including several trips to GoogleLand, I finally found a stackoverflow article about iconv_strlen causing execution timeouts.
I am now upgraded to Mamp Pro 2.x.
Happy news: it upgraded my mysql without losing any data – in fact I didn’t need to do anything.
Concerning news: it warned me that my “templates” had changed. I had changed my php.ini files. That might prove to be a pain down the road – we’ll see. I did take a backup of them.