How to reduce first byte time

Hi all,
I have developed a joomla 3.2 site. I have tested it with and i got following results
First Byte Time-F
Keep-alive Enabled-A
Compress Transfer-A
Compress Images-A
Progressive JPEGs-F
Cache static content-A
Effective use of CDN-yes

link for the result-

I have enabled cdn on my site.Now, I want to reduce my site’s first byte time as i’m getting F in First byte time. how can i improve my site’s performance??
And, how can i convert images to progressive images as i got F in progressive JPEGs??
Here’s link to my site-
Please help me to improve site performance.


You can enable Joomla’s page caching but generally it’s usually “get better hosting”. Are you running on a shared host, VPS or dedicated server? The first byte times for most CMS’s (including Joomla) are usually driven almost entirely by database performance and it is usually pretty bad on shared hosting. Adding caching can hide the problem but really fixing it usually means a faster database.

Hi pmeenan,

We are on a dedicated server. The server is 5x more powerful than our requirement. Is there any particular server setting we need to tweak ?

Make sure you have a PHP opcode cache like APC installed.

To find your bottleneck, what you could try is putting some load on the server with software like LoadUI, ApacheBench, or simply by running a link checker like Xenu (if you have enough pages), and then monitor your server resources (with top) to see what’s slowing things down. Is the CPU fully engaged, and/or is it waiting for the disk (%wa)? Are you running out of memory?

What are the specifications? Most dedicated servers have regular HDDs, and poor disk i/o is often the bottleneck.

I have the same type of issue, however I’m using GoDaddy shared hosting (no boos or groans, please). It is a client site.

When I was working with my CDN company (MaxCDN), they said the same thing – first byte is almost always driven by the hosting company.

Their suggestion was to implement CloudFlare in addition to the CDN, as CloudFlare is actually a ‘first hit cache/CDN’ of your site (before people actually hit your server), so instead of getting served by your server, they are getting served by CloudFlare first. They have a free service and it seems to have helped my sites (by about 30% speed increase).


agreed. i use cloudflare for quite a few sites and have found it does help with load times (and first byte times). this on a decent spec VPS. also use w3 total cache with max cdn and find they work very well together. for example

We have a magento site, we started using full page cache and then we got our load time from over 1000ms to under 400ms! Its probably the key on any site.

Are you running Enterprise? What is your experience with the other optimization features and Magento? For instance, we found things like Rocket Loader and Auto Minify on CloudFlare caused errors in our page loads.

We’re running Community, and until we anty to the $15k /yr Enterprise, we do not have access to full page caching.

Hanger We are running community as well we purchased an extension that works great.

Before throwing that much at Enterprise just for faster pages I’d throw more money at hosting first. A VPS running on SSD’s with enough RAM and CPU should perform a lot better natively (page caching largely hides issues and only on commonly accessed pages).

Hello, firstly i would like to thank you in public pmeenan for his help and i am sure that is the best on this field.

I have the same issue and my problem was doubled but i reduced by adding expires header.
But still, it’s not 100% fast and less than 2s.

My problem now is:
Am running a forex website on Wordpress on a VPS or dedicated server, i have half plugins regarding the previous site, so i tried it on test server i have the same site to deactivate the plugins and the result was that the first time byte was B(almost without any plugin activated), but all plugins are required and vital for the side.

What do you suggest to me? Is there something i can do? I must talk with server support? The server is in USA but i don’t have any us customer but even i am using CDN.
Really am very confused, so i need somebody who is expert on that field

Additional things you can try:

  1. Move the server to be as close as possible to your target audience ( and use a decent VPS provider: there is a huge variation! ).
  2. Enable all available caching. Apart from Wordpress plugins like W3-Cache, this includes Opcode cache ( APC or Zend if on PHP 5.5 ) and all relevant database caches. THe intention is to be able to feed the website from memory and avoid disk when possible… always slow, but often really, really slow on VPSes
  3. Ensure latest WordPress, PHP, and if seriously after every millisecond look at using Percona Mysql 5.6.
  4. Replace Apache with a lighweight web server like nginx

After that it gets more difficult. A code review is always good: as you’ve seen not all plugins are created equal. Also, the pagespeed web server plugin from google can help patch over poor quality code, but it does further complicate site maintenance.