Please suggest improvements for my education portal

Hi I run an education portal called for Indian students.
The site runs on joomla on a dedicated server synced with Vbulletin and PHPmelody. I am on Joomla 1.5.23 and use a CDN

This is the result of my test -

I wanted to know the following:

  1. How can i reduce the first time to byte - Is it CMS specific?

  2. How do i reduce the number of requests?

  3. How do I achieve better images compression and combined JS and CSS

Thanks for all the help

1 - Yes, it is specific to Joomla (wordpress and drupal have issues there as well, just different ways to solve it). Joomla 1.6 has better support for page caching but I believe 1.5 also has some support for it. Take a look in the site configuration settings and see if there is anything related to page caching that you can turn on. That will save a version of the static page on the server side and not re-generate it every time. Otherwise it’s usually a matter of better tuning the database and potentially looking at the various plugins to see if there are any that can be removed.


  • Looks like you are downloading 9 different font files - see if you can consolidate those (or eliminate the custom fonts entirely).

  • You have a fair number of page graphics that can be combined into a sprite

  • See if you can move the social buttons to load after onload (+1, twitter, facebook)


  • The image compression is a huge problem. You can save 600KB just by re-compressing the jpeg images. Basically go through the list of images here: and take each one of them and save them using the lowest quality setting that you can while keeping the images looking good. If you are using Photoshop we recommend “save for web” quality level 50, if you are using other tools usually a value of 75 for the quality.

  • The js/css combination will be harder on Joomla than other platforms. I’d recommend fixing everything else first and then revisiting to see how things look.

Thanks a lot for your time and response I will update as soon as i make the changes.