You’re not the boss of me

After having my domains on three different servers for a long time, I mathed it out that it’d cost me the same to put ‘em all on one VPS (virtual private server). After calling up my ISP (the fanfreakintastic LiquidWeb) they had me all moved over without me having to fuss! Combine two shared accounts into one VPS? Sure, done. I suspect my next bill will look … weird, but that’s okay. I’m sure that even if it’s all messed up, I can call them and get it sorted out.

The first thing I did was make sure everything was running and then I left it alone for a day. Did anyone notice? No? Good, the fix was in!

Then I started fiddling. I didn’t know a lot about VPS, having only mucked about with a RedHat distro before, and LiquidWeb provided me with cPanel and WHM, which I’d never used before. They also had the very familiar shell world for me to jump into. Google being what it is, I quickly found a VPS Optimization Guide that gave me some ideas to start.

What I’ve Done So Far
My memory usage, with one beefy site and two baby sites, was hitting 50% which, in my mind, was bad. Now the beefy site runs off WordPress which is known to have these issues. My CPU was barely passing 0.01 (yes, that’s right) though, so that was good. My first thought was to try WP-Super-Cache again, except last time I did that, CPU went through the roof and stayed there. Also, you lose dynamic feeds etc (unless you use AJAX) and I’ve heard great things about WP-Super-Cache but the fact that it’s not a locked in part of WP has always made me wonder as to it’s viability. If it really was that good, or the only solution, it would be built in. Not to knock it, but I consider it only one option.

While I know I need to optimize WP, my first stab was to optimize the server. Except that I didn’t. I switched from Zend to APC. Now, I’m not really sure if that was the best thing to do. I find a lot of people clamoring that APC is better and since I’d had weird issues with Zend before (outright borking MediaWiki if not configured specially), I decided to give APC a shot. If someone has info on some benchmarks or a good link to why APC is better than other PHP cache tools, I’d like to see them.

Then I removed Clamd (and ClamAV). Yes, I know it’s virus scan software, but I’ve never actually seen it catch anything. What I run on the server, and what my ONE (yes one) resold client will run, aren’t going to get caught by it. We run the same stuff. So call it a calculated risk. I also turned off EntropyChat (never gonna use it), MailMan (resource hog), Analog Stats and Webalizer (leaving AW stats, though personally I use Woorpa and Google for stats). Gave the server a bounce after all that and my memory dropped from the 50-th percentile to the 30s. I consider that a success.

My only issue is that my phpinfo page looks weird… No idea what happened there.

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Comments

  1. Hey, saw your post. I work at Zend… Thought you might be interested to know that just released today, there’s a new free version of Zend that has Optimizer+ in it, a much faster cache, it’s called Zend Server (free trial license also issued immediately at our site at that link). It also comes in a free community edition, Zend Server CE… You can find, download, and try it out at the links I provide. Cheers, Brad

    • Are there any specs on what makes Zend better than other compression tools? Also APC is part of the PECL which makes me think it’d be better for long term PHP support. My ideal world is RonCo. Set it and forget it ;)

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