Very slow website - need help!

Okay, I have recently had my website redesigned using a vBulletin front end. The website is now painfully slow. I switched it over to a dedicated server thinking that would help, but it doesn’t seem any better. It would be extremely helpful if someone could take a look at my results and give me some feedback. I am not very tech savy, but will do my best to understand.

It looks like the bottle neck it time to first byte and cron.php. Any suggestions on how to speed these things up?


That is going to be a function of the hosting provider you are using and the plugins you have enabled. You can try this profiler: to see if you can narrow it down to specific plugins (or try disabling all of them and see if it is still slow).

It looks like the static resources (js, css, etc) are all served really fast, it’s just the php code that is slow. It could be anything from the web server config to the database to the back-end code (template or plugins). You can try reaching out to your hosting provider to see if they see anything they can fix but otherwise it’s probably going to require a fair amount of “tech savy” to fix (or even moving the site to a different host).

I disabled all plugins and got much better results:

That profiler you suggested is for Wordpress and I couldn’t figure out how to install it in vBulletin. I will have to see if I can find another for vBulletin. I guess another options is to gradually reactivate the plugins and see which one is really slowing things down.

Sorry, my bad - thought I saw a request that made me think it was a wordpress plugin. I’d recommend a binary search:

  • Run each attempt for 9 runs, first view only
  • Turn on 1/2 of the plugins

If it got really slow then:

  • Turn off 1/2 of the remaining plugins

If it didn’t get slow, turn off that 1/2 and turn on the other half

Repeat until you get it down to a single plugin.

It could also be death of a thousand cuts if each plugin makes it just a bit slower but hopefully there is one that is doing something stupid.

If you have any plugins that do user verification or reputation I’d look at those first. Those are more likely to call to an outside service and that adds a dependency that could be really slow and out of your control.

I just tried disabling each of the plugins individually. I ended off disabling every one of them and it still runs slow. Not sure why this is behaving different then if I disable all hooks in config.php. Any thoughts?
Found it… there was a legacy plugin not tied to a product. It was from an old website design and, for some reason, was still active. The website was loading in over 12 seconds and now is down to under 3 seconds. Much better!

Very cool, glad you managed to track it down.