Like many on these boards, I’ve been trying hard to find ways to break through the less-than-ideal response/load times DreamPress is delivering… after all, we’re paying a substantial additional monthly fee. I think the overall consensus is that people are expecting a bit more for their $$$.
That being said, running the various page speed diagnostics (Chrome’s Audit Tool, YSlow, Google PageSpeed Insights) there are a few things that I wanted to get some advice on to aid me in optimizing my page.
I’ll concede that the themes and plugins are the main culprit behind the great multitude of http requests. For this reason, I’m interested in employing some sort of CSS, JS, HTML Minifier plugin… and that lead me to W3 Total Cache, which opened a pandora’s box of tweaking options I had no idea about.
Question 1: Why does DreamHost not recommend using W3 Total Cache with a DreamPress deploy/Varnish? I see plenty of articles claiming they can work together fine and it is even mentioned in a DH wiki post Fine Tuning Your WordPress Install. In fact, the first article that returns negative search results for conflicts is a DreamPress issue which is a this board. DreamPress Varnish caching conflict with plug-ins
Question 2: Does Dreamhost recommend any minifying tools? W3TC recommend Tidy, which doesn’t seem to be installed on the DP server. I checked the wiki and don’t think this is something I have rights to do Tidy
B: Server Optimization
Using the W3TC Plugin’s install guide, there seem to be a few tweaks they recommend that DreamPress doesn’t address:
PHP installs like PECL
Question 3: Are the tweaks suggested by W3TC only valuable if using memcache(d)? Can .htaccess optimization be baked into DreamPress?
Question 4: Besides simplifying, removing themes, plugins, etc, does DH recommend any other advanced tweaking that can improve the response times from my DreamPress install? Is getting a dedicated server the most powerful way to speed things up?
Thanks for your help!
Curtis Anderson www.steamericas.com