Improved Site Speed

I have been in a constant battle with Vanessa about who’s site loads faster than who’s. The testing I have done was via websiteoptimization.com, and from their results I was smoking her on the speed of loading. I then decided to see how much I could optimize mine, and here are the results.

Orignal

Total HTTP Requests: 6
Total Size: 36274 bytes
14.4K – 29.31 seconds
28.8K – 15.26 seconds
33.6K – 13.25 seconds
56K – 8.43 seconds
ISDN 128K – 3.41 seconds
T1 1.44Mbps – 1.39 seconds

Optimized Site

Total HTTP Requests: 4
Total Size: 21452 bytes
Load Speed
14.4K – 17.43 seconds
28.8K – 9.11 seconds
33.6K – 7.93 seconds
56K – 5.08 seconds
ISDN 128K – 2.11 seconds
T1 1.44Mbps – 0.91 seconds

As you can see by removing some excess code, and some unused plugins it improved the loading of the site and the over all size as well. I am sure there is still much more that I can do to get a faster response, but this is good enough for now…. And should keep Vanessa at bay.

MythTv Revisited

It has been a while since I have had a post about MythTV on here.  Since my roommate purchased a nice 40in LCD I figure I might as well start to rock the MythTV box again.  This time it will be running Ubuntu Feisty Fawn(Mainly for the ease of use/install)  I will have some pictures up once it is back up and running.
And on another note I have tweaked my site a bit so that it loads a hair faster, and by far faster than Vanessa’s site…

Gallery 2.2.1 Reinstalled

I decided to reinstall the newest build of Gallery… So that means that all the pictures have been wiped out.  The newest build, dubbed the Double Double does seem to have some vast improvements over the last release.  I will be adding some pictures this week and checking them all out.  If you haven’t upgraded yet, then you should.  It was a pretty simple upgrade.  They have come a long way since Gallery 1.

WordPress : Perfect Setup

With working in the web hosting industry I get a lot of questions or how to minimize load and prevent comment spam. I thought that I would do a quick little write up of what I have found to be the best ways to head off these issues, many of which I use here myself.

First off you want to make sure that you are running the latest and greatest version of WordPress(At the time of this writing the newest version was 2.1.3). WordPress 2.1.3 has many fixes in it and a lot of code rewrites which not only improve loading time, but also cuts down on a lot of the queries that are not needed for certain functions. And as usual the upgrade from older version to the new takes only a few minutes thanks to the great upgrade script that is included with the install.

Minimal Theme: We all love to have a theme with a ton of bells and whistles to it, but all those extra images and tables can cause a lot higher load on Apache than something that is very trimmed down.

Less Plugins: Same goes here, it is always nice to have a tag cloud, stats and handfuls of trackers. The more of these that you remove the less queries that WordPress has to make to the database, this can speed up things a log.

Here are the plugins and hacks that I have found to not only prevent spam, but give you an upper hand when combating spam on your blog.

Akismet – This is by far the best plugin to have enabled on the front line. Not only does it do a great job at catching spam, but it is written by the same folks that created WordPress so it ties in very well… oh yeah did I mention that the service is free. Note: If you are not running WordPress you can still make use of this plugin with other Content Management/Blog software.

WP-Cache plugin - This plugin alone has been shown to drop server loads from a WordPress site anywhere from 50-80%. The install for this plugin is very straight forward and you can have it up and running in a matter of minutes. With the newer version of the plugin it also has some bug fixes with the built in WordPress Cache. With in the settings of WP-Cache you can change the “expire time” from 3600 seconds to 600 seconds, this should help you out in case you ever make front page on Slashdot or Digg.

http:BL – This is a pretty new plugin that makes use of Project Honey Pot. This plugin verifies IP addresses of clients connecting to your blog against the Project Honey Pot database. You just need to enable it and then head over to ProjectHoneyPot.org and get a free account.

Post Query Accelerator – Changes the way that a variable is looked at in WordPress so some queries are cached.

Bad Behavior 2 - I have actually yet to install this, mainly because of a lack of time as there are some extra tweaks that you need to do to get this working effectively with WP-Cache. I have done some reading and this looks to be much better over Spam Karma 2, not to mention they are looking at enabling http:BL into the next version which will do away with yet another plugin.

Now if you have a Virtual Dedicated or a fully Dedicated server you can do even more to the system, and some hosting providers might even do these type of changes on a Shared platform as well.

eAccelerator – This is a great add-on for any system. It caches parts of scripts so that PHP does not have to run the file again, cutting down on CPU usage. In most cases the default settings for this after install should do you well. You can check out my article on how to install it.

Lighttpd – I am still using Apache since I am on a CPanel system, and well Apache works just fine with it. But if you want to take on the task you should look into Lighttpd. Lighttpd is a light weight web server that is getting a lot of attention since it has a small footprint and still supports many of the same add-ons as Apache.

Stay tuned for more tweaks coming soon.

Not 7pounds

I have gotten a few emails from people wondering why they have arrived here when they were attempting to get to 7pounds.net.  I am not a squatter or anything like that, I actually own both of the domains and have for sometime now.  I recently decided to put an end to 7pounds since I wasn’t really keeping it updated.  Its much to hard to maintain multiple sites.  Anyways this will be the new home for it for a while, or until I decide that it needs to be on its own again.