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Pageline Framework 2.2.5 update slowed down load time and lost the 'snappy' performance of WordPress


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#1 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:22 AM

I have just updated a very basic site (babyguerrilla.com) to Pageline Framework 2.2.5 (from 2.1.6) and page load time has increased and lost the snappy performance it use to have before the upgrade. Click on a menu option and there is a delay of a second or more before a page starts loading. The site has been restored back to 2.1.6 now!

I have a pretty fast (Intel Xeon E5 3.6Ghz CPU) web server so it is not the server. Besides it has not changed.

Here is BEFORE and AFTER 2.2.5 upgrade. Please note the increase in load time. I suspect "pagelines-compiled-css-1341565397" (106.7KB) in 2.2.5 is the reason for this delay.

Framework 2.1.6 (BEFORE UPGRADE)
Posted Image

Framework 2.2.5 (AFTER UPGRADE)
Posted Image

According to the Pingdom tool, the home page was 373KB (2.1.6) and it has gone to 491KB (2.2.5). And it seems that above mention file does not load concurrently with other files.

As Google places high value on load time for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), I really cannot accept that Pageline Framework is going backwards with load time.

For the record, 2.2.5 is faster than when I briefly tried 2.2.1 but still slower than 2.1.6.

Request to the community

It is possible my 2.2.5 upgrade (and 2.2.1) has not installed correctly. If anyone reading this have 2.2.5 installed and their website is responding to menu clicks instantly, rather than non-responsive for a second and then start loading, please reply with your site URL and I would love to test out your site.


Question to Pageline

Are you working on a future Pageline Framework upgrade that may reduce the load time of 2.2.5? If not, would you take load performance in to consideration in your future Framework upgrades please.


Thank you for reading my long post.

Paul


(My original post on 'slow performance of Pageline Framework 2.2.1 can be found here -

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#2 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:39 AM

An increase of 1.31s isnt bad. Anyway add this to wp-config.php:

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If your server is setup properly it will write a static css file instead of using a rewrite.

#3 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:00 PM

Hi Simon, Thanks for your fast reply. I am surprised to hear that you are okay with home page load time increasing by 1.3sec. Re: php modification you mentioned - do I place that at the top (first line) of the wp-config.php or last line? Does it matter where in php? What is the potential or known downside of going static over dynamic? I like to make an informed decision. Obviously, this php file will be over written when WordPress is updated (since it is not part of the theme), making maintenance of Pageline Framework based site more complicated. As I asked in my original post, can you tell me if Pageline is working on a future update that will address this performance issue?

#4 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:03 PM

I love rejection. Add the line above or below the wp_debug line... The potential is obvious, a static css file wil load in milliseconds, the dynamic file has to load all of wordpress. The file will NOT be overwritten when you upgrade, it is stored in the uploads dir, and gets rewritten every time you save settings.

#5 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:05 PM

Can you tell me if Pageline is working on a future update that will address this performance issue?

#6 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:14 PM

We worked on it, the static file system is it. Have you tried it?

#7 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:28 PM

If I understand you correctly, the php mod you suggested will increase the performance of WP. So if I added that line to my existing 2.1.6, I assume I can shave off the load time below what I am getting. Correct? Then comes along 2.2.5 upgrade and again, I assume it will be slower than 2.1.6 with php mod... maybe? So, I do appreciate you sharing this 'turbo' php static mod but I genuinely want to know if Pageline aims to improve performance as part of the future upgrades, for a more holistic approach to improving the future revisions. If performance is not a priority to Pageline, we have different priorities and I would like to know before I build more sites using Framework. It is never easy to hear criticism of products one has worked hard to build and maintain. I am not trying to be difficult, I am trying to understand if you and I share a common goal.

#8 Danny

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 12:54 PM

Hi, Performance is one our highest priorities but at the same time, we are unable to create peak performance products when people use poor hosting plans or packages. PageLines 2.2+ is actually faster than 2.0.

#9 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 01:39 PM

Danny, What is a recommended web server specification for Pageline Framework 2.2.x? to achieve faster performance than 2.1.x? Do you have a URL of live 2.2.5 sites running optimum server so that mouse clicks on menu loads pages without any delays? I would love to analise their performance. To be fair, I am looking for a site that is NOT using Simon's band aid php mod but a standard php.

#10 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:49 PM

The css file mode was added in 2.2.2. Adding it to 2.1.6 will make absolutly zero difference.
Also it is NOT a wordpress turbo feature
It is NOT a php band aid.

As I stated above (twice) It enabled PageLines Framework to write a static css file instead of using a dynamic URL.
If you don't want to enable it, that's up to you.

#11 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 02:50 PM

Oh and here is the changelog

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#12 beardedavenger

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 04:04 PM

Pingdom is pretty unreliable because it doesn't take into account caching. After the LESS is loaded, it's cached, so subsequent visits are faster than the first. This is relatively true with the web in general. With that being said, my personal site runs PageLines Framework 2.2.5 with a child theme, and that's it. Load time is 1.4s. Really, without Typekit it would be in the millisecond range.

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#13 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:12 PM

The css file mode was added in 2.2.2. Adding it to 2.1.6 will make absolutly zero difference.


Thanks for this info and the link to the change log.


Also it is NOT a wordpress turbo feature / It is NOT a php band aid.


Again, thank you for the clarification.

Here is my thinking so far... I have been with Pageline since PlatformPro. I have upgraded as soon as Framework came out. The road so far has been bumpy... slide features not working properly or widget content moving or Custom CSS not working anymore, etc., I am aware that Framework is much more then a theme and there are 'overheads' that goes along with it.

In July, when I upgraded to Framework 2.2.1, the site slowed down by several seconds (see link in my first post, if anyone is interested in details). So, I waited for a month after Framework 2.2.5 was released and watched this forum for feedback from other users. And when I thought everyone was happy, I tried installing 2.2.5. For whatever reason, for me, 2.2.5 is still slower then 2.1.6. I note from the change log a lot of work has gone into 2.2 and lot of core files have been changed. No doubt to improve the security and add functionality. That's really fantastic that you guys bring out revisions so frequently. Kudos to you!

I have learned a lot from other people having issues with their websites and most importantly, I got heads up on what to expect from a particular Framework upgrade. What I am saying is that I have become a little cautious of Pageline updates. That should set the tone of where I am coming from as I reply below.

As I stated above (twice) It enabled PageLines Framework to write a static css file


I know you guys are busy and most of Framework clients just want a solution. I am creating and maintaining sites for paid clients and I have to do what I can to keep those sites going the best I can. So, I need to know the pros and cons to what I do. Q1. Simon, why is

define( 'LESS_FILE_MODE', true );

mod not part of the standard Framework 2.2.5 if it provides such a performance boost? Like you said, maybe it only works on some servers? Maybe it reduces some functionalities? Maybe it will change the annual migration patterns of some birds in Alaska!

I am just trying to make an informed decision about modifying the php. That is why I am coming back here asking more questions. You can see that I have invested a reasonable amount of time with my original post and subsequent replies. I would really appreciate it if all my questions are answered so that: (a) I can make an informed decision; and (B) other users who might read this post in the future might also benefit from your input.

Danny implied that my server was not up to the task of Framework 2.2.5 with his reply

we are unable to create peak performance products when people use poor hosting plans or packages.

I will ask the same question again, Q2. What is a recommended web server specification for Pageline Framework 2.2.x? to achieve faster performance than 2.1.x?


Pingdom is pretty unreliable


When I originally had the issue with Framework 2.2.1, Simon introduced me to Pingdom tools (

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). Before posting my original screen shots, I have tried several times and it seems to provide me with reasonably consistent results.


NickHaskins.com


Indeed your site load fast but I cannot see the "pagelines-compiled-css-1341565397" (106.7KB) in your Pingdom result. Also, your site does not appear to have menu so I cannot test the response I mentioned earlier. Q3. I wonder if you know of any other site that is running unmodified (straight out of the box) Pageline Framework 2.2.5? I have a pretty fast server and I was surprised to hear that Danny thought my server might be an issue.

Other then trying to convey why I keep asking questions, my main reason for this reply is to find out from you guys what are the down side of modifying php as Simon suggested? If any? If there are no down side, will Framework 2.2.6 come out with the php modified so that it will be static for everyone? I would really appreciate an open and detailed reply that can assist me to make my decision.

Thanks guys!

PS. I seem to be missing the [Reject] button from this post? I can only see [Accept] button today.

#14 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:25 PM

I removed the reject button ;) The reason the file mode is not enabled by default and does not have an option in the settings is this: It is an advanced feature that may not be supported on $1 a year cheap as chips shared hosts. So rather then get 1000s of 'why will it not work for me, I paid $19.99 for a whole year and the hosts say they are the best in the world with unlimited everything!...' emails... we decided that it should be for advanced users only. My blog uses 2.2.5 and has a menu btw

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#15 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:46 PM

I removed the reject button


Oh, I see. I thought I had to reject or the post does not go red to get support people's attention. Obviously, I was wrong since you replied back to me very quickly.


we decided that it should be for advanced users only


Okay... that makes sense. This is a BIG news for any Framework users. If I am understanding you correctly, I think everybody would want to try this mod on their sites and if they cannot improve their site's performance, they would want to upgrade to a new hosting plan or to a different hosting company! Do you have a page listing 'performance tips' for Framework users? I started wondering what else I might not know and missing out, if this php mod was only revealed to me when I asked. Is there any other tips Simon?


My blog uses 2.2.5 and has a menu btw

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Simon, again this site is amazingly fast but I cannot see "pagelines-compiled-css-1341565397" (106.7KB) on this site. I assume you did your php mod to this site?


Simon, what is a recommended web server specification for Pageline Framework 2.2.x? to achieve faster performance than 2.1.x?

And, do you have another site that is running on standard Framework 2.2.5 with menu that is on a fast server Danny mentioned?

#16 Simon_P

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:53 PM

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my css file

#17 cybersphere

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 11:59 PM

This is getting more interesting by the minute. Can you please tell me why my CSS is over 106KB and you're is 29KB? I'm getting a size envy!! Also if you could provide me with answers to other questions mentioned in my previous post and if you have any other performance tip or link to a tip specific page? I don't think I ever got such a fast turn around of my support requests before. Thank you very much for this.

#18 Simon_P

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 12:10 AM

MaxCDN compresses js and css files. There are no other 'tips' and this was never a secret here is the original release thread:

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I suggested the static file route in that other thread. Getting tired now, 1am on Sunday so I'm not going to just keep replying with the same info again and again. If you want static css file, enable the static css file mode, or not.

#19 cybersphere

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 12:15 AM

I didn't realise you were using MaxCDN distributed servers. Okay, that explains the performance you are getting from 2.2.5.

#20 Simon_P

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 12:18 AM

CDN does not affect wordpress performance. I can turn off the CDN and the static css file will still load just as fast.