MySQL Alter Table Drop Column INPLACE NoLock – Until which point the column being dropped is accessible?

I am trying to run MySQL Alter INPLCAE command to drop few columns from a very large 90GB table. While the Alter is running I am able to run the Select statement on the same table to ensure that the table is not locked.

MySQL Version 5.7 with innodb


  1. While the alter command is running with in place algorithm and nolock, up to what point the data can be accessed in the columns being dropped? e.g. at the point when the columns are almost being dropped? I need to make this change in prod so need to make sure of this.

  2. Can the application still update the table while the alter to drop columns is running? Currently the columns are stored and after dropping them we will be converting them Virtual.

  3. Will there be any downtime at all, I read somewhere that the table will be locked shortly at the end, correct me if I am wrong.