Robert McLaws: Windows Edition

Blogging about Windows since before Vista became a bad word

Weekend Site Improvements

I took a little time this weekend and started a series of improvements to the site. One of the reasons the site has been running slow lately is because I was incorrectly redirecting the traffic from the old LonghornBlogs.com URLs into the new site. I whipped up a quick .NET module to redirect to the proper URL and issue a 301 redirect, so that should no longer be an issue.

Second, we've been getting a significant number of hits for blogs that are no longer being updated. So I started redirecting them to a message showing that certain blogs are no longer active. It's a static file that doesn't make a database call, so that picked things up a bit too.

Third, I re-enabled HTTP Compression on the site, so even though the server is still be bit too bogged down at the moment, the content should still download a fair amount quicker than before. It reduced the downstream transfer by 80%, making pages load 5x faster on average.

Fourth, I encountered an error in my Community Server installation that was pointing to legacy stylesheets, even though I've changed the skin. It was adding 3 failed requests to each page view, and when the site gets 100,000 page views a day, that adds up quickly.

I have one more item on the to-do list. A while back I deleted a lot of blank blogs on the site. For some reason, some people are subscribed to the RSS feeds for those blogs, even though they were empty. So I'm working on a module that will intercept those feed requests and map them to the inactive blog message I set up, instead of throwing an expensive exception and then redirecting to an error page. That should also close the aggregator's connections to the server, which apparently doesn't happen when Community Server throws a feed error.

Finally, fairly soon I hope to be moving to better servers, with more memory and SATA drives. That should speed things up considerably. Anyway, thanks for sticking around. I'll be re-enabling anonymous comments shortly.

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Comments

  • JoeM said:

    Sounds good,  feels a little better.  What server OS are you using?  If you don't mind me asking.

    February 20, 2007 8:22 AM
  • Windows Server 2003. I'm seriously considering moving to Longhorn Beta 3 when it is released.

    February 20, 2007 12:23 PM
  • Tomer Chachamu said:

    "It reduced the downstream transfer by 80%, making pages load 5x faster on average."

    You didn't check the amount of time for the server to compress the page. Probably minimal, I admit.

    February 21, 2007 1:59 PM
  • JoeM said:

    Robert McLaws, the site is feeling like Windows Server,  fast and always responsive.  That is why I moved my servers over to 2003.  My test for Longhorn server IIS7.0 are showing alot of promise. :)

    February 25, 2007 4:32 PM
  • Mr Speed said:

    What about htaccess headers to cache?

    <a href="http://www.askapache.com/2006/htaccess/speed-up-sites-with-htaccess-caching.html">Speed  Up Sites with htaccess Caching</a>

    March 4, 2007 10:17 AM