As you drive more traffic to your WordPress website, pages will gradually load slower – it’s natural.
Your hosting server is handling more and more requests at the same time. Your entire website could crash when your visitors collectively download, comment, and submit files simultaneously.
This is where website owners may think: “It’s time to update my content delivery network (CDN)”. That can help, but it comes at a price, literally. Rather, caching is a way to increase the speed of your website without buying more bandwidth.
That’s where Memcached comes in: it uses server memory to speed up your website. That way, users can access it on demand, almost instantly, at reduced page load speeds.
Join us as we explore using Memcached in WordPress, how it works, its benefits, and how to install it on your server.
This is exactly what you will learn:
What is Memcached?
memcache is an easy-to-use, high-performance memory caching system that accelerates dynamic web applications.
Brad Fitzpatrick developed this open source solution for his website, LiveJournal. At this point, Memcached is used among the most popular websites, mobile apps, games, and e-commerce platforms.
Although it can be used as a standalone solution, memcached usually works in conjunction with:
PHPDjango (Python)Ruby on RailsMongoDBMySQLPostgreSQL
When you use WordPress with Memcached, your website visitors will enjoy lightning-fast response times.
As? Memcached allows your host server to save frequently used data. The next time the data is needed, the server doesn’t have to request it from a database or search for drives.
Memcached’s object cache can store anything from an integer to an entire HTML page in its RAM.
What if you run out of space? Memcached will overwrite data that has not been used the longest.
This all sounds good, but before you enable Memcached for WordPress, you should know a bit more about the program.
How does Memcached work?
Memcached stores frequently used data in your server’s RAM, which is easier to access than requesting information from your database. An application can access data in microseconds instead of seconds, since there is no need to communicate with a database, find a drive, and transfer the information.
This reduces the time it takes for your website to respond to application planning interface (API) and calls to databases and render pages.
So how does it work? Here’s a basic overview:
An application (for example, a web page) sends a data request to the Memcached server using a unique key to identify the data needed. Once the request is received, Memcached accesses the RAM cache to check if the requested data is already stored there. If so, Memcached serves the data. Mission accomplished. Let’s say the data is not there. In this case, Memcached accesses your database in the back-end of the website, retrieves the information, and stores it in memory. It also displays the information you requested.
If the application requests the same data in the future, the Memcached service will retrieve it from memory instead of the database.
However, this data is not permanently stored in RAM. Memcached gives it an expiration date, automatically removes it from memory, and creates space for future use.
Using WordPress with Memcached works in this way to lessen the load on your back-end databases, resulting in a faster, more efficient, and scalable website for you and your audience.
The benefits of using Memcached on a WordPress site
There are many reasons why you will want to enable Memcached on your WordPress website. Let’s explore them below.
Memcached reduces response times to microseconds
Data in memory does not have to make multiple round trips to the database and back to the application. That reduces the time it takes to recover data, leading to blazing-fast speeds that improve application performance and the user experience.
This alone is enough to get many people started with their WordPress Memcached setup. Imagine response times measured in millionths of a second.
memcached is flexible
You can use WordPress with Memcached to handle different types of data, including simple data structures like integers and strings. It can also handle arrays and objects like documents, images, and videos.
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Memcached is easy to use
Memcached was designed to be versatile and easy to use. Memcached is also open source and supports many programming languages, including Java, PHP, C, C++, C#, Python, and Go. Multiple database languages also support it, including MongoDB and MySQL.
memcached is scalable
Memcached uses a multi-threaded architecture, which allows you to run multiple tasks within a single process at the same time. Because of this, you can scale it between servers to handle high levels of traffic. As your audience grows, scale by adding nodes to the existing node structure.
You can even use multiple core processors on a single node to increase your computing power, leading to faster and more stable performance.
Memcached reduces database load
Using WordPress with Memcached reduces the number of database queries your host server must send to retrieve information from the database. This means that fewer requests are handled by the database at a time, so any requests that need to be processed will be handled faster.
Your server is also less likely to get overwhelmed. This minimizes the risk of your website going offline due to server downtime.
Memcached has a massive supportive community.
Memcached has a massive community supporting its open source project, so you can always find help when you need it. Memcached depends on open standards and supports open data formats; this is possible thanks to the support of a vibrant community.
Memcached is profitable
By using WordPress with Memcached enabled, you avoid more expensive hosting plans and hardware upgrades that your business doesn’t really need yet. Using Memcached optimizes the performance of your website without the need to buy more processors and bandwidth.
Benchmark before WordPress Memcached setup
When you enable Memcached for WordPress, the goal is to improve slow database queries to help overall website performance.
That begs the question: exactly how well is your website currently performing? It’s wise to take note of your current position before beginning the setup process.
There are many tools that you can use to monitor the speed of your website. of Google PageSpeed Insights is an excellent place to start.
To test your website, go to the PageSpeed Insights home page, enter your URL in the search box, and click Analyze to get your results.
On the Diagnose performance issues tab, pay close attention to the metrics section. It gives you a detailed analysis of the performance of your website. Use them as a reference before turning on Memcached.
How to enable memcached in WordPress
With your performance baseline set, let’s see how long you can slow down your page load speeds. First of all, your WordPress Memcached setup method will depend on several factors.
Some hosting providers offer caching support by default. If yours doesn’t, you can manually install Memcached on your server, if you have the right. access to network protocols.
If you have access to network protocols, you will need to access your server’s Secure Shell (SSH).
If that’s not an option for you either, contact your hosting provider so they can enable Memcached on your WordPress website.
once you have accessed the SSH command prompt of your server, you can install memcached using linux commands. You better understand how your server’s particular Linux distribution works.
For example, the Debian and Ubuntu operating systems use slightly different commands than Fedora or Redhat. If you are not sure about the installation commands for your Linux distribution, you can consult its documentation.
On Ubuntu, use the command:
apt-get install memcached
On Redhat, use the command:
yum install memcached
When you’re done, go to your WordPress dashboard and download a caching plugin like W3 Total Cache to set up your WordPress Memcached module.
Contact your web host
Memcached is popular software and many hosting providers pre-install it on their servers.
Check with your host. If your host has memcached pre-installed, you can enable it from your control panel. If the host does not have it pre-installed, you can ask support staff to set it up for you.
Final Thoughts: Enable Memcached in WordPress to Get the Most Out of Your Hosting Solution
Memcached remains a very popular caching system due to its simplicity, speed, and scalability. It is an efficient way to store and retrieve data from server memory, reducing the workload on back-end databases and optimizing performance.
Memcached’s flexibility and wide compatibility make it a valuable tool for all kinds of WordPress website owners, as long as they have enough RAM.
If you’re looking for hosting that supports high-performance websites, consider Nexcess. Nexcess provides Redis for object caching with the Object Cache Pro plugin for WordPress integration.
Also, you could have access to 32 GB of RAM with WordPress business hosting from Nexcess, as well as 10,000 GB of bandwidth. Contact us today to discuss your hosting needs or enable Memcached on your WordPress website.
This blog was originally published in December 2017. It has since been updated to be more accurate and comprehensive.