First Byte Time on Wordpress

Hi All,

Figured I’d add to the pile of First Byte Time CMS challenges here…

I am running W3 and while it appears to be doing everything else (gzip’ing, minifying, etc) my first byte time is still pretty poor both on the first and repeat views.

Does anyone know how I might verify that Page Caching is actually functioning? I’m not seeing any errors but the debug output in W3 isn’t outputting anything either.

View your page source, if the page is cached W3 will output a message saying it is.

As for time to first byte you might try a wordpress plugin called ‘Debug Queries’ to see exactly what’s going on between wordpress and your database. If you see a lot of extra calls for example you may want to remove other plugins or site functions to lower the number of calls made.

Less is more when it comes to plugins, don’t forget to turn off Debug Queries when done testing.

So all I see in Page Source is:

<!-- Performance optimized by W3 Total Cache. Learn more: ...and that's with all debug boxes checked in W3 Settings. I have just three plugins running; W3, Akismet, and WP-Postratings. My theme is heavily customized and does make a decent number of DB calls (70 to 90 last I checked), however I was under the impression that was exactly the kind of thing that W3 was supposed to cache up. I'll be sure to check out the Debug Queries plugin but would certainly welcome more input as well. I should also probably say that the site certainly seems to load quickly for me as an end user; especially for Wordpress. It's only here on WebPageTest that the load time looks sub-optimal.

Hi All,
Am also facing a similar issue with my website -, which is on wordpress. The test - - shows a first time byte of 3.188 seconds which is very high as compared to standards. Can anyone show me the way forward?

What is it that can be done to reduce the TTFB of my website?


@amit - have you tried installing W3 total cache and configuring it? That’s usually the first step though sometimes it can be a bit fussy about working but when it is working it works really well.

@doc, I’m pretty sure the page caching isn’t working (though I can’t necessarily tell you why). I have a test installation at that I use to do some testing and this is the normal output (without debugging even enabled):

I have it configured to use APC for caching (pages, database and objects) because it’s an in-memory cache and creams everything else but I would have expected to see some level of diagnostics in the results.

Okay, thanks that helps. I’m also configured to use APC.

I have some other non-standard things going on as well. For one, this is a Wordpress-MU installation. W3 seems to support this fine (I don’t get any errors or anything) and I was under the impression that rewrite rules aren’t even necessary if you use APC so I don’t think it’s that.

Perhaps I’ll contact the W3 folks directly and ask about an MU installation.

I did try installling total cache as well super cache, however i faced a lot of issues when i was trying to make these plugins work. Finally, i got them off the website as that was doing more harm to the website than good.