Increase OSCommerce Performance

Dramatically Increase OSCommerce Performance with ‘Pagespeed’ on Firefox. Recommended in Google’s Webmaster Tools, Pagespeed will quickly and easily analyze your site’s performance. More importantly, this analysis will also give you the exact reasons why your site performs as it does, list out the specific steps you can do to improve it AND gives you the tools to do it plus the links to understand what you are doing.

The increase in page load speed as a result of implementing these steps was dramatic.

Load the Software

  • Open Firefox and add Firebug to the developer tools
  • Once you have Firebug installed in FireFox, you can install Page Speed

Run the Analysis and Fix the issues

  • Starting Page Speed Score: 71/100To open ‘Page Speed’: Firefox>Tools> Open Firebug>,
    A frame opens, click ‘page speed’ and then ‘run analysis’. The analysis of this page yielded a speed of 71/100 and the following clickable list:

    pagespeed list
    pagespeed list open
  • 1: Minify and Combine CSS: Page Speed Score increases to 79/100
    (Be sure to empty the cache before reload to rerun the analysis: Firefox>tools>Clear Recent History >Last Hour)Two of the items are ‘Minify CSS’ and ‘Combine External CSS’.
    Click ‘Minify CSS’ . Page Speed has actually produced a minimized version of all stylesheets. We simply cut and paste these versions into one css document, one stylesheet, (be sure you cut and paste them in the order they are listed in your website), and upload it to our website and use that single stylesheet instead of the multiple stylesheets we were using. We reload and rerun the Page Speed analysis. Our Page Speed Score increases to 79/100.

    pagespeed minified link
    pagespeed miminified
  • 2: Minify and Combine Javascript: Page Speed Score increases to 82/100Next we do the same thing with our javascript programs. Minify and Combine. Again on the analysis, click the ‘minify js’ in the list and you are provided a link to a minified version of your javascript programs. Cut and paste the minified versions where possible into one js document. On this page combining our minified js files ran our score up to 82/100Tip: Customize the main JQuery File
    You can configure a custom version of the main Jquery library, or js file, before you download it and load on your website. This allows you to have the official JQuery UI library but with only the components you use, therefore smaller in size and faster to load.
  • 3: Leverage Browser Caching: Page Speed Score soars to 89/100Note the item in the list ‘Leverage Browser Caching’. Click it open. You’ll most likely get a long list. To understand what this is, click on ‘leverage browser caching’ or google the term. To fix it just paste this in your .htaccess file:
    # BEGIN Expire headers
    ExpiresActive On
    ExpiresDefault "access plus 1 seconds"
    ExpiresByType image/jpeg "access plus 2592000 seconds"
    ExpiresByType image/png "access plus 2592000 seconds"
    ExpiresByType image/gif "access plus 2592000 seconds"
    ExpiresByType text/css "access plus 604800 seconds"
    ExpiresByType text/javascript "access plus 604800 seconds"
    ExpiresByType application/javascript "access plus 604800 seconds"
    ExpiresByType text/html "access plus 2592000 seconds"
    # END Expire headers

    We rerun the analysis, and we get a Page Speed Score of 89/100. This is a phenomenal improvement, and we have done little more than cut and paste. And we still have some items significant items on the Page Speed list to fix. In addition, we haven’t even started on this: A Store Speed Optimization in Progress.

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