I spent a few hours this past weekend working on some performance optimization for the site. This site is run on the WordPress blogging software which has tons of great plugins available to add functionality. The downside to this is that most plugins tend to slow the website performance slightly. The exceptions to this are the plugins that are written specifically to speed up WordPress site performance.
Perhaps the best know plugins for improving WordPress site performance are WP Cache and WP Super Cache. Due to the nature of Open Source Software, these two plugins are not mutually exclusive. WP Cache introduced caching ability to WordPress. WP Super Cache built upon the success (and code) of the WP Cache plugin and added enhancements to further improve performance. I've been running the WP Super Cache plugin on this website for the past year.
Now for the recent performance enhancements. Starting this past weekend, I'm no longer running WP Super Cache. I have replaced that plugin with W3 Total Cache. "Replace" is probably not the correct word here. Just like the way WP Super Cache built on the code from WP Cache, W3 Total Cache has built upon the code of WP Super Cache and added further enhancements. Correction: W3 Total Cache is independent (not forked) from WP Super Cache. It has similar caching functionality along with enhancements to further improve your site performance.
Is the site faster?
In my observation, the website feels noticeably faster. If you're one of my regular visitors, what do you think? Is the site faster?