In the previous article of ourWordPress On Cloud series, we discussed various techniques for improving performance of our WordPress site. Once basic performance improvement methods are applied, we use monitoring tools to test and optimize the performance of the site. This methodology is referred to as “fine tuning,” which we have already discussed in previous article.
The testing we are going to perform is often known as load testing. In this form of testing we see how our site would perform when accessed by number of users at the same time from predefined geographical locations. There are various tools available for this kind of testing, and we are going to use an online load testing tool called Load Impact. Load Impact will provide us with results and graphs of various metrics from which we will be able to deduce the factors affecting our site performance.
These load testing tools create virtual users for accessing the site content and resources. This creates the perfect environment to determine the site’s behavior under normal and peak conditions. This also helps us identify site capacity and factors dragging down performance. When testing conditions are set to extreme, we call it stress testing. Under a stress test, we get to see the site’s performance under an unusual load. With the help of New Relic APM, we will also be able to see how each element in our system responds when subjected to a high load.
Similar to Load Impact, Blazemeter is online tool for load & performance testing of web, mobile applications, and APIs. Blazemeter enables the user to perform customized and advanced testing on a desired system with the help of Apache JMeter and Selenium. Blazemeter also has a WordPress plugin which makes testing quite easy for the user. This plugin creates a load script that simulates all kinds of users visiting the site. The simulations are done via dedicated clusters of load engines generating the traffic depending on plugin settings.
After running the tests, you should get a report similar to the following:
The impact of a load test will also be reflected in monitoring tools we installed earlier in the series. The New Relic APM reports will help us identify factors affecting the performance of the site. You can also alternately integrate your New Relic account with Blazemeter and get corresponding reports in Blazemeter itself.
After gathering results from the tools discussed above, we can find bottlenecks affecting site performance. With these results, we can further fine tune optimization done so far to help us reach our original goal of improving the overall performance of our WordPress site.
As traffic to our WordPress site increases, we add new instances of required resource. A load balancer distributes workload to corresponding instance, thereby optimizing resource use, minimizing response time, and avoiding overloading any particular single resource. Load balancing also helps enhance availability of the site; in case of failure of any instance, the balancer will re-route traffic to available instances.
Load Balancers have the fundamental task of distributing incoming requests to corresponding resources according to the selected algorithm. Apart from that, there are several other features to a Load Balancer, which vary with the vendor. You can find a Load Balancer most suitable for your needs at ComputeNext Global Cloud Marketplace. At ComputeNext’s Marketplace you get more options and flexibility while deciding on configuration, location, provider, etc.
This concludes final article of WordPress on Cloud series. In this series we learned to install, deploy, use, optimize, and test a WordPress site on Cloud. If you have followed the tutorials, you should have a usable, optimized, and scalable WordPress site at your disposal. You can find all the resources used for these tutorials at ComputeNext Marketplace.
There are some advance tweaks and alternates to things we covered in this series. For example one can use PostgreSQL database instead of MySQL, Nginx in place of Apache, etc. You can read about such topics and more in WordPress official documentation, you should also make use of WordPress official forum in case you have any WordPress related questions. We hope you enjoyed the series and deployed your own WordPress site in the Cloud. You can leave comments below in case you have any doubts, questions, suggestions, etc. about the WordPress on Cloud series.