Working on my site performance looking for thoughts.

Hey Guys and Gals.

I am new around here and could use some advice, I have ran a few tests and everything seems fine but my first load time is graded as an F at 1243 ms I would love any input on this and anything else you might see should be corrected.

Dalton Dooly.

What platform are you running on (wordpress, something else, something custom)? The first byte time is mostly going to be back-end server work that is a black box from the outside but there are tools that can help give you more visibility (or you can try a bunch of things and see if any make progress).

Wordpress, I run W3 Total Cache Plugin google see’s me at 92/100 for speed score and only says 2.3-3.4 secs load time so it get confusing when each speed test shows a different load speed.


Inconsistent time to first byte usually means you’re on an overloaded shared server. I see you’re host with pSek. Message me if you want some recommendations on hosting.

I do not believe it is our hosting we are on a dedicated box with enough space and bandwidth to last us a while, any other thoughts?

What’s your general server setup? LAMP stack? Varnish? Memcached? How much traffic concurrent and daily does your site do?

Here are our stats, Let me know if you need more detailed info.
Server Status

ftpd up
cpsrvd up
cpanellogd up
named up
imap up
queueprocd up
clamd up
Server Load 0.11 (8 cpus)
Memory Used 35.5 %
Swap Used 1.5 %
Disk /dev/sda5 (/) 4 %
Disk /dev/sda1 (/boot) 11 %
Disk /dev/sdb (/backup) 3 %


Main Domain
Home Directory /home/techandg
Last login from
Disk Space Usage 1141 / 4000 MB
Monthly Bandwidth Transfer 8669.94 / ∞ MB
Email Accounts 17 / ∞
Subdomains 2 / ∞
Parked Domains 0 / ∞
Addon Domains 0 / ∞
FTP Accounts 0 / ∞
Mailing Lists 0 / ∞
All SQL Databases 2 / ∞
MySQL Databases 2
PostgreSQL Databases 0
MySQL Disk Space 6.26 MB
Postgresql Disk Space 0 MB
Mailing List Disk Space 0 MB
Hosting package Custom
Server Name host
cPanel Version 11.34.0 (build 11)
Theme x3
Apache version 2.2.22
PHP version 5.2.17
MySQL version 5.1.65-cll
Architecture x86_64
Operating system linux
Dedicated IP Address
Path to sendmail /usr/sbin/sendmail
Path to Perl /usr/bin/perl
Perl version 5.10.1
Kernel version
cPanel Pro 1.0 (RC1)

Server Stats

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400S
6GB Kingston DDR2 RAM
2 x 500gb HD - RAID 1
1 x 1TB HD - Backup
1 TB Bandwidth

From the outside it is going to be really hard to tell you specifically what is causing the slow times (it’s all a black box). It is usually something like:

  • lots of database queries
  • slow database responses
  • calls to external services
  • overloaded server (running out of available clients)

Since you are on a dedicated host with (presumably) root access I highly recommend installing New Relic. They instrument your server-side and tell you exactly what is slow (and gather the performance for all of the actual visitors). If you have developers or sysadmins available to look into the issues it will save you a ton of time (and it is free for 2 weeks for the pro-level).