How to Optimize Drupal

As your Drupal website grows in popularity, you’ll need to find ways to improve the performance without sacrificing stability. In background processes, Drupal performance optimization helps your content load faster and reduces the amount of server resources. Regarding online visitors and potential customers, competitive website speed boosts your search engine optimization (SEO) for higher visibility. Note how the back-end improvements and SEO benefits affect each other.

Below we will cover:

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Drupal Caching

Caching allows the server to store copies of webpages on the server. This allows web pages to load faster and reduce the overall load on the server. If you don’t multiple changes to your Drupal website daily on a regular basis, Drupal’s native caching features are great options to speed up your page load times without configuring server level software.

Drupal performance optimization settings
  1. Log into your Drupal dashboard.
  2. At the top, select Configuration.
  3. Under Development, select Performance.
  4. Under Caching, select a cache-control maximum age between 1 minute and 1 day from the drop-down menu.
  5. Under Bandwidth Optimization, both Aggregate CSS files and Aggregate JavaScript files should already be checked. compressing these files easy Make changes as necessary.
  6. At the bottom, select Save configuration.

If at any time you do make a lot of major changes that you want to display immediately, select Clear all caches at the top of the page.

Drupal Database Optimization

Optimizing your Drupal database can dramatically affect how fast your website loads, especially if you’ve served a large amount of content over the course of years. The easiest way to do this is with the DB Maintenance module.

The DB Maintenance module is unavailable for Drupal 9 as of March 2021.

  1. Log into your Drupal dashboard.
  2. Install the DB Maintenance module.
  3. At the top, select Site Configuration, then DB Maintenance.
  4. Select how often to optimize the tables (this runs a cron job).
  5. Select the database tables you want to optimize.
  6. Click Optimize now to optimize the selected tables now or Save Configuration to start optimizing database tables per your new schedule.

Other Drupal Performance Optimization Methods

Below are other methods to optimize Drupal depending on your server environment and business needs. This includes server applications and other integrations.

phpMyAdmin has the ability to optimize individual tables within a database. The database administration tool is included by default in cPanel server hosting but can also be installed manually.

Static Suite is a Drupal module that exports your front-end website into a pure HTML duplicate to improve performance and mitigate PHP security issues. You can publish the static conversion to a separate directory or web server depending on your needs. Static site generation is often an overlooked option for website speed optimization. However, this is a worthy consideration for websites without interactive elements such as comments and contact forms.

PHP-FastCGI Process Manager (PHP-FPM) supersedes suPHP and to enhance performance with PHP-based applications without bogging down web servers. Once you enable PHP-FPM in WebHost Manager (WHM), follow our guide for optimal PHP-FPM settings for Drupal performance optimization.

NGINX is part of our UltraStack caching solution in Shared Hosting and Cloud WordPress Hosting plans. Anyone with root access to their web server can install NGINX and Redis for better overall server performance.

Load-balancing is an excellent way to optimize large websites if you have three or more cloud servers. Although it may seem difficult to do, we have guides on how to easily set up a load balancer with Apache and HAProxy within minutes.

Feel free to ask any additional questions regarding Drupal performance in our Community Forum for further assistance. Learn more from our Drupal Education Channel.

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