I have a managed VPS with Future Hosting, which has 3 gigs of Ram and at present it doesn't get a huge amount of traffic but I'll soon be releasing a new book and I'm expecting a few big jumps in visitor numbers, so even though there won't be thousands online 24/7 I want to ensure the site works as quickly as possible on those occasions when prospective customers click through from newsletters etc.
At the moment I think it just has a standard Apache configuration, which I believe Future Hosting does by default but I wanted to ask opinions on ways to speed up performance. The site itself is not yet built but will be a responsive html design and possibly include a short html 5 video so everything can be seen correctly across numerous devices.
My last VPS with a different web host only had 1 gig of Ram but I had Nginx installed and it was pretty fast. Any suggestions on whether I should stay as I am, go for Nginx, Mod_Pagespeed, Varnish or some other option? The reliability and support at Future Hosting have always been great, so with a bit of luck they could do this for me
So far the only two things I've done are to activate the option inside cPanel to "Optimize Website" with the setting to compress all content. Then in the .htaccess I've enabled the cache expiry but that will only affect returning visitors who haven't deleted their browser cache, so I'm sure there is more that can be done to make everything a bit faster. I saw a clear difference on my last last VPS with page loading speeds after Nginx was installed. I would rather exploit the existing capabilities of my VPS rather than paying for additional services if possible.
I've just been speaking to support about installing Ngnix and they've asked if I want it as a proxy(Nginx+httpd) or standalone (No Apache, only Nginx web server) and I'm not sure what the right answer is. I have one wordpress blog installed that doesn't get huge quantities of traffic, so apart from that it's all static html with just a few html 5 animations. Does anybody have an opinion on the best option here?
I would let nginx serve static content and proxy dynamic content requests to Apache.
That's what we ended up doing principally because I had a bunch of .htaccess redirects and the proxy install lets me keep those in place. It's definitely faster now than it was before and as always support at future hosting were brilliant.
If your willing to drop CPanel, you can also run OpenLiteSpeed (free)
Does it help in server optimization??
Do you have any link comparing OpenLiteSpeed with cPanel.
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I wanted to keep cPanel and because I had a bunch of .htaccess redirects linked to a PDF file we went with Nginx as a reverse proxy for Apache, which I know from my last VPS can make a big difference. Installing Nginx in place of Apache would have killed those .htaccess redirects apparently.
On top of that we activated mod_pagespeed yesterday, which is supposed to be particularly useful for speeding up page loading for mobile devices. I originally thought we'd put in ngx_pagespeed but for some reason it wasn't possible.
The actual VPS doesn't have an SSD but something that Futurehosting calls "SSD Energized" though I'm not entirely sure how that works. As always it's a question of finding the right balance for your needs within a reasonable budget and I think my current setup is pretty good for the money, especially with the server management thrown in.
There was a very good point made above about good coding and I managed to tidy up something that made a huge difference to one of my sites. The problem was that a shopping cart insert was being called up from another server on the other side of the world and the page loading was literally blocking for a second while that information was being fetched, so I contacted the developer and discovered there was an updated code that doesn't appear to cause any delay at all now, which has resulted in a much smoother effect.
The next site I'm having designed will be a responsive design that can work across all types of mobile device and adapt automatically, so that will be another challenge...
If you have time and you are really serious about the visitors to your site then get your site tested for load testing for say 200 users at one time.
And during this load test you can measure the server load and also would get to know if the code is able to handle 200 user load or not.
It will show you the clear picture of it.
And based on the results of load testing you can look for further customization.
Anyways all the best with your project.
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