Optimizing WordPress

WordPressWhen I originally deployed WordPress to power ellisonline.ca I wasn’t too worried about performance. I had a pretty powerful server, and I didn’t expect too much traffic.

Unfortunately, like everything in technology, times changed and I was worried about the performance of my favorite blog (mine). I embarked on a crash course on optimizing the performance of php based sites in general, and WordPress specifically.

I believe I’ve succeeded in improving the performance of my site significantly using a few simple tools.

1) I enabled query caching in mysql (the database backend to wordpress). To do this I edited /etc/mysql/my.cnf and added the following three lines:

query_cache_size = 268435456
query_cache_type=1
query_cache_limit=1048576

This enables mysql to cache the output results of queries – making the queries returned by WordPress return quicker.

2) The second optimization I performed is I installed APC (A Perl Compiler). This compiler significantly improved PHP performance on the site.

3) Lastly I Installed and configured the WP Super Cache plugin.

These three optimizations together were more than enough to improve my response times.