Articles

Informative articles on various technologies ...

High PHP execution times for Drupal, and tuning APC for include_once() performance

We discussed the topic of the open buffet binge syndrome, where web sites "gorge" on contributed modules, and cause site performance to be slow and memory utilization to be high.

We encountered an interesting case recently while doing work for a client. The main symptom was page execution time that is high (800 to 1200 ms), but database query time that is low.

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Benchmarking PostgreSQL vs. MySQL performance using Drupal 5.x

Drupal has long supported both MySQL and PostgreSQL as database backends. The vast majority of Drupal users run it on MySQL though. Support for PostgreSQL in Drupal has suffered from non-contiguous maintainership, with someone taking it for a year, then disappearing, then someone else comes by and takes it up, ...etc.

There has even been concerns among core developers about PostgreSQL holding back patches that work fine in MySQL.

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Upgrading Drupal Sites With Security Releases Using a Single Patch

On October 17, a new security release of Drupal 5.3 came out to fix some potential issues with Drupal 5.2.

Sometimes, you have a Drupal installation with a few customizations in core. Or you simply do not want to perform a full upgrade by wiping existing files and replacing them from the tarball.

So, you can opt to apply the patches listed here, but there are too many of them, and if you have many Drupal installations, this will add to the amount of work.

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Presentation: Ontario Linux Fest 2007: Performance Tuning and Optimization for large LAMP sites

I presented at the 2007 Ontario Linux Fest, held at the Toronto Congress Centre yesterday, October 13.

It was a very busy afternoon: from 13:30 to 14:30 together with Angela Byron (webchick) and Derek LaVenture, I hosted a Drupal expert Q&A session, where lots of good points were raised.

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Subscriptions module: sending notifications as nodes are updated vs. cron

A client site that is growing fast recently complained that the site is slow when creating nodes or when commenting.

The slowness was very noticable, taking up to 30 seconds from the time "Submit" button is clicked, until the site comes back with a new page.

The site has approximately 14,000 nodes, 109,000 comments and 22,000 users.

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Similar Entries module: Scalability issues and workarounds

A client site that is growing fast uses the similar entries module. During the course of a performance tuning exercise, we found a few scalability issues with the module, and some workarounds to them.

Block configuration does not load

This site has more than 41,000 term ids in its categories. This is because it is a user generated content web site and has free tagging enabled, so there are lots of tags.

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