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This Week in Website Performance

website-performance-weekly-monitorusThis Week in Website Performance is a weekly feature of the Monitor.Us blog. It summarizes recent articles about website performance. Why? Because your friends at Monitor.Us care.


Essential Server Performance Metrics you should know, but were reluctant to ask

Author: zhirayr.

There are a great many important metrics that allow you to evaluate the health of your server, of varying usefulness. This article presents a minimal set of metrics to begin monitoring to understand the state of your web application.


15 things you can (and should) do to make your site faster for mobile users

Author: Joshua Bixby.

Mobile users face unique performance challenges such as slower networks, reduced browser speed, and smaller cache size. Here are a number of fundamental and advanced tactics that you can use to take on these challenges, and win.


Keys to a Fast Web App

Author: Steve Souders.

Ajax architecture, JavaScript, and caching are three keys to a faster web app. Steve Souders briefly explains his take on these keys and begins collecting browser cache performance data.


How we keep GitHub fast

Author: Kyle Neath.

The most important factor in web application design is responsiveness. And the first step toward responsiveness is speed. But speed within a web application is complicated. Kyle Neath explains how a Performance Dashboard and Mission Control Bar are organized and used to maintain awareness of performance.


Is your .NET application ready for a race?

Author: Ard-Jan Barnas.

If your .NET application was to run a sprint, would it win the race? To determine whether your application meets its performance objectives (and wins the race) and to help identify bottlenecks, you need to measure your application’s performance and collect metrics. Ard-Jan covers a variety of perspectives within the scope of a .NET application and server.


It’s the Hardware, idiot! Increasing MySQL Performance

Author: Zhirayr.

MySQL performance can be increased in two ways, software optimization and hardware upgrades. While previous articles have covered much of the software side of performance optimization, we are now going to focus on the hardware aspect. From RAM upgrades to server load balancing, Zhirayr presents a comprehensive article on hardware improvement and the effect on website performance.


What Hardware Powers Etsy.com?

Author: Laurie Denness.

Read about the performance of hardware in the server classes Etsy.com used to power over $69.5 million of sales for their sellers in July. Traditionally, discussing hardware configurations when running a large website is something done inside private circles. With the advent of the “cloud”, this has changed slightly. Suddenly people are talking about how big their instances are, and how many of them. And this is a great practice to get into with physical servers in datacenters too.


Approaches to Testing Modern Web Applications

Author: Stephen Pierzchala.

The goal of load testing is to simulate the visitor traffic that is expected under peak conditions as accurately as possible. The hardest work is in ensuring that the test you run answers the critical questions you have. The crucial what, why, and how much to load test is covered in this article.


Not as SPDY as You Thought

Author: Guy Podjarny.

Guy’s study shows the seemingly obvious, but possibly overlooked, applicability of SPDY. In a nutshell, SPDY speeds up HTML, but if HTML is not the bottleneck SPDY might hinder rather than help.


Improved HTTPS Performance with Early SSL Termination

Author: filepicker.io.

HTTPS results in a measured performance penalty of over 200 ms on every connection across North America since it requires two additional round trips due to handshakes. Wanting to provide the best experience possible without distributing web services, filepicker.io has engineered SSL termination to be distributed in order to reduce this latency.


Automated front-end performance: How do you calculate developer ROI?

Author: Joshua Bixby.

Anyone who does site optimization knows it is best done by hand. Anyone who pays the bills wonders why software front end optimizers can’t be used instead. If you’ve never done site optimization, you’d never suspect the pain that lurks behind the performance doors. This article goes through some ROI exercises and ultimately shows that FEO tools are useful in the arsenal of much needed optimization staff.


Getting Started with Drupal, Part 2: Optimizing Your Drupal App

Author: Tobias Sjösten.

Sluggish performance is a common condition with drupal once the initial site is configured and the content base is growing. We all know that page load speed is more-or-less inversely proportional to traffic and revenue. This article covers a large number of performance tools for your drupal-based site. You may find some tools you didn’t know of before.


Optimize Performance and Scalability with Parallelism and Concurrency

Author: Bob Hancock.

In some cases with python, parallelism and concurrency is not always the best choice. This 3 hour video provides a look under the hood in order to help you make the best choices when it comes to optimization. From how the operating system handles your requests through design principles on how to use concurrency and parallelism to optimize your program’s performance and scalability. Covered are processes, threads, generators, coroutines, non-blocking IO, and the gevent library.


3 hour video session for increasing performance of CPU-bound python code

Author: Ian Ozsvald.

At EuroPython 2011 Ian Ozsvald ran a very hands-on tutorial for High Performance Python techniques. This updated tutorial covers profiling, PyPy, Cython, numpy, NumExpr, ShedSkin, multiprocessing, ParallelPython and pyCUDA.

Here is a link to his 55 page PDF write-up of the EuroPython material that he used at pycon 2012

About Ron Lyman

"Ron Lyman is a lifelong technology enthusiast.  From downloading weather maps via packet (ham) radio and saving data to a hacked beta tape machine, to working as a senior IT operations engineer in a mid-sized corporation, he has worked and played with digital information his whole life.  Now residing on the Canadian West Coast with his wife and daughter, he is providing information to help you help him use the web that much faster."

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