Over the past two months, various members of DoIT, University Marketing, and CALS have been focusing on key performance updates for the WiscWeb service to improve page load times. This effort was in response to reports of slow page load times for both authenticated (logged into the editing environment) and unauthenticated (not logged in, your general website visitors) users of the tool. We would like to provide an update on the status of this endeavor.
In July and August, we tackled three major projects that have resulted in significantly faster load times for unauthenticated users and improved load times for authenticated (logged in) users. These included updating the page cache time to load (TTL), adjusting opcache to reduce cache misses, removing low usage plugins, and upgrading the theme’s structured hardware (still in progress). From these changes, we have observed page load times for unauthenticated users go from ~10 seconds down to ~ 1 second. For authenticated users, we have seen page loads drop from ~12 seconds down to ~ 5 seconds. Please note that these metrics represent only on-campus internet users.
While these changes have resulted in some really great improvements to performance, this effort will never truly be finished. Updates to our plugin list, addition of more sites, and changes to server configurations are all things that can affect performance and will require us to make adjustments regularly.
In an ongoing effort to reduce the number of emails we send about this journey, we will be posting updates about progress and performance-related news on our website homepage. Please look there first if you are interested in the status of WiscWeb performance engagements.
Additionally, we would like to gather feedback from our users on their page load experience in WiscWeb over the past month. Please consider taking this 2-minute survey so that we can learn more about where we might continue to make improvements and whether or not you’ve seen any positive changes.
As always, if you have questions or concerns please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can assist you.