This post is designed to inspire our beloved server administrator to get some sort of caching installed.
So I finally decided that enough was enough and I wasn’t going to wait until I spontaneously combusted with the motivation to build my own blogging/CMS system and finish my site. Last night I downloaded WordPress and began hacking my design into their template framework.
While testing it all out, I noticed that the responses seemed pretty slow. I wasn’t sure if it was the wireless network (I’d been wrangling with it a few hours earlier), so this evening I decided to do some benchmarking. I am something of a performance freak, after all. (So I lied about my intentions at the beginning of the post… who cares?) I’d already looked at some of the code (quite hideous, in my personal opinion), so I had a feeling things wouldn’t be pretty out of the box.
I was right: the default installation managed a measly 4 requests per second. First I installed APC, which, under Ubuntu, requires installing the PEAR and php5-dev packages, then running
sudo pecl install apc. The addition of byte-code caching pushed it up to 13 requests/second. Clearly, the code was suffering from runtime — not compilation — issues.
I didn’t have any real desire to delve too deep into the code, so I opted for the prebuilt WP-Cache plugin. And this one was worth the money: just by enabling the plugin I jumped to nearly 500 requests/second. Note that this is a 125 times better than I started with. (Out of curiosity, I also ran with caching on and APC off; about 200 requests/second.)
In short: if you’re running WordPress and you can/have self respect (*grin*), install APC and WP-Cache.