Blog performance

This blog has been getting slower and slower, probably because of the myriad of plugins I have running on it. I’ve been thinking of ripping them out, which would mean I’d miss some functionality. I particularly like the flags that FireStats adds in for example, and the Gravatars on my comments, however, performance is a pretty important factor, and if a site runs like treacle, visitors just won’t turn up.

Looking for some feedback from my visitors. Is the site too slow for you? Would you miss all the purty stuff ?


  1. I had problems with FireStats (as we discussed) but you might also want to try looking at the performance using FireBug’s network monitoring.

    A quick look here showed that a lot of the delay is a couple of slow-loading elements which bottleneck the rest of it.

    I’d personally try mapping a couple of extra DNS names to your site and referencing them via the alternate names – this will allow for better pipelining as most browsers will take two requests from each name.

    e.g. for images and for js/css

    The other advantage of this is when you start getting overloaded or burning up your bandwidth allowance you can purchase some cheap hosting bandwidth anywhere and flip the dns over without having to worry about the dynamic elements etc 🙂


  2. Purdy is nice; readers are nicer. Rip out anything that doesn’t serve a purpose for your readers, and/or is not required.

    Example: keep blogcatalog, mybloglog, technorati … even fuelmyblog. I’d ditch the traffic feed (that’s more for you than us), and anything else we on this side don’t really have a use for.

    I have to do the same thing occasionally. It’s too easy to get bogged down in gadgets.

  3. @Damien: Thanks for the advice. I’ve never used the alternative domain names thing, and will look into it.

    I have Firebug and love all the functionality. The problem I have been seeing hasn’t been so much in page elements being slow to load, but the web server taking an age to start sending the HTML (sometimes up to a 30 second delay before the page starts painting). I was blaming this on the time it takes to execute all the PHP code, but today the site is running really quick. At this point I can only assume it’s load on the server (I’m using shared hosting, so that’s out of my control).

    I probably will rationalise the plugins I’m using, but not rip them all out.

  4. @Ghosty: Thanks for your input.

    I think you’ve hit the nail on the head, some of the elements on the page are more for me than for readers. I really like the traffic thing at the side of the page and it loads really quickly so not worried about it, but the flags in the comments that FireStats provides aren’t really that important I suppose.

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