At WP Engine, there’s no confusing caching plugins

Other so-called “Managed” WordPress hosting companies say they’ll make your page fast, then leave it to you to find and configure complicated page- and database-caching plugins with 100 options. We think “managed” means you shouldn’t have to figure all that out!

At WP Engine, we’re 2x faster than the closest competitor, and we ban all caching plugins because we do it better, and we do it automatically.

Here’s how:

Page Caching

This refers to caching the HTML content of a page for a not-logged-in user, rather than having the server regenerate it from scratch using PHP and the database.

Caching plugins put copies of generated HTML on disk or in memory. This is much faster than generating from scratch.

However, all the caching plugins we’ve found have bugs where it doesn’t always purge their cache when pages are updated.  For example, if a recent post is updated, the RSS feed needs to be purged, as does all the category and tag pages containing that post.

Also, using our proprietary page-caching system, we get through-puts of 9,000 pages per second! Even the fastest caching plugins like W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache are orders of magnitude slower, which means slower and less scalable websites.

Page caching is automatic, and we manage it for you. You don’t have to do anything.

Object Caching

WordPress has an internal caching system which includes several subsystems (i.e. the Caching API, Object Cache, and Transient API). WordPress core allows plugins to control this caching system to reduce the number of database calls.

Although plugins like W3 Total Cache do a decent job caching, we’re now using code written by the experts at Automattic which does exactly the same job, but our profiler shows it can reduce page-load times by as much as 1/2 a second over those plugins.

Object caching is automatic, and we manage it for you. You don’t have to do anything.

CDN management and URL re-writing

A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a network of thousands of servers distributed around the world. It can serve your static content (e.g. images, CSS, and Javascript), and does so from a server physically close to the browser that’s requesting it. This gives you both speed and scale.

CDN’s are traditionally expensive, and you have to re-write the URLs in the HTML that WordPress creates to serve your statics from the CDN instead of from the original server. Plugins like W3 Total Cache help by making it easy to re-write those URLs.

However, we’ve found that W3 Total Cache rewrites only about 50% of your URLs!  And we manage the rest of the CDN process for you so you literally do nothing at all to get all the benefits. It doesn’t even cost you extra money!

So we use our own proprietary system which gets all the URLs, and is managed by us.  You have a control to enable/disable the CDN, but that’s all.

CDN management and URL rewriting is automatic, and we manage it for you. You don’t have to do anything.

Browser Headers and Compression

There’s a lot of things you want to tweak correctly with both dynamic HTML and static images, CSS, and Javascript.

There’s browser headers, like correct cache-control, there’s delivering text files in a compressed format for browsers that support it (which is most of them), there’s compressing images for faster delivery, even making sure your fonts will work with our CDN, and more.

We do all that for you. You don’t need any fancy plugins. And everything automatically works with our internal caching systems and CDN.

So… no caching plugins!

Relax. No more options to be confused about, no more plugins to mess with.

Let us worry about that. You just enjoy a really fast, scalable WordPress site.

Original Article by Jason Cohen 

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