I had install the W3 Total Cache plug-in but forgot to document my configuration.

The first thing I did was watch the video on the plug-in page above.  It mentioned a 10x improvement in YSlow so I downloaded that.  I installed in Firewall and run it on the home page of my WordPress blog after uninstall the plug-in.  I got a grade of D.

The video mentioned to get a load time test at Pingdom.  I did that and the time was 3.73 seconds with a grade of 66/100.

The first step I did was reinstalled the plugin.

I did do any extra configuration and the YSlow grade went to a C and the Pingdom went to 68/100.

I then started researching configuration recommendations.  The first place I looked was the Installation tab for the plug-in on WordPress.org.  Here are the settings they recommended:

  • General Settings
    • Page Cache – Disk Advanced
    • Minify
      • Check Enable
      • Check mode to Auto
  • Page Cache
    • check – Enable Compatibility mode
  • I saved on each tab and the clicked the Empty the page cache

I re-ran YSlow and it was still a grade of C and Pingdom was 72/100 with a load time of 1.06 seconds.

I then started searching in Google.  I found this beginner article that mentioned to enable these settings:

  • Browser Cache
    • Check
      • Set Last-Modified head
      • set expires header
      • set cache control hear
      • set entity tag
      • set W3 Total Cache header
      • enable http (gzip) compression
      • prevent caching of objects after settings change
      • disable cookies for static files

I then emptied the page cache and the minify cache.  I also updated the media query string.  At Pingdom, the load time was 2.30 seconds with a score of 71/100.  YSlow was still a C.

I next found a support article on HostGator that saved to disable Database Cache and Object Cache.  I did both of these.  No change on YSlow but Pingdom went to 81/100 and 1.47 seconds.

I did some more research but then noticed that Pingdom was changing locations.  I noticed a settings button and made all the test come from San Jose.  The load time improved to 1.01 seconds but the grade went back down to 71/100.  I re-enabled the two from above and no change.  So, since they were defaults, I will leave them enabled.

But then I read another article that Database Cache and Object Cache would be disabled if on a shared server, so, back to disabling those options.

I found another article that mentioned a setting in Page Cache to preload the cache.  So, I enabled this and set the update internal to 3600 seconds or 1 hour.  Also, enabled the option to preload when a post is published.  That could Pingdom to a 71/100 but a 930 millisecond load time.

I found one last article but I am starting to think there is no one to configuration W3 Total Cache so I am done at this point.  I re-tested at Pingdom and got a 71/100 and 1.02 seconds.

One last point.  Many article mentioned to use a CDN.  Of course this would make it faster but that isn’t directly a function of the plug-in, in my opinion.