Common causes of accounts that use excessive resources

In the previous article we talked about CPU and memory usage. Now that you have a basic understanding of server resources, we going to cover common reasons accounts will use resources excessviely. 

MySQL activity

This can mean many different things. MySQL refers to your site’s database(s). For example, if you have a WordPress website, it uses MySQL to store your website’s content in a database.

If your website has long running MySQL queries (asking the database for too much information) or excessive amounts of querying (asking the database for more information repetitively) it can cause your website to load slowly or even crash.

Poorly coded Scripts/ Plugins/ Modules

It’s a common misconception that all websites have the same CPU / Memory usage. This is not the case though. For example, a WordPress website with a default theme and no plugins uses far less memory than another WordPress website with a custom theme and 20 plugins. Also, keep in mind that a website with one poorly coded plugin can cause CPU and memory usage than a website with 20 well-coded plugins.

Sometimes it’s as simple as updated your plugins and scripts to the latest versions. Most developers will update their code to address resource usage and fix security holes. If your website is custom coded you may need to examine the code or contact the developers who built the website for you.

Cron Jobs running too often

Cron Jobs are basic task schedulers. This allows you to schedule a script to run in specific increments like every minute, every hour, or every day. Cron jobs that aren’t configured properly or ran too often can cause high server loads which can affect how your site loads.

High Traffic

High traffic isn’t a bad thing. This means your website is getting a lot of visitors and is probably a goal for you. A great way to look at this is using a basic fish analogy:

  • Let’s say you buy a small fish and a tank for it to live in. Eventually, the fish grows and is happy and healthy. However, at some point, this fish may have grown too big to live comfortably in the original fish tank you purchased. It may be time to move to another tank to ensure your fish remains happy and healthy.

The same applies for web sites. You have simply outgrown your current hosting plan and it may be time to upgrade to a different plan that better suits the needs of your website. Please read our article for more information on upgrading your account.

Search Engines Overly Crawling Site

At times, we see our customer’s sites being crawled excessively by search engine bots. Having your site indexed by the search engines can be important so people can find your website. There comes a point where the search engines can be over crawling your site which can affect your site’s ability to function as you have intended it.

Over-crawling your site can mean different things. Google and other search engines can be crawling too many pages of your website, especially ones that you do not want the public to see. Also, over crawling can mean they are making too many requests to the server. To resolve this please review our article on setting a crawl delay in Google Webmaster Tools or how to stop search engines from crawling my site.

Carrie Smaha
Carrie Smaha Senior Manager Marketing Operations

Carrie enjoys working on demand generation and product marketing projects that tap into multi-touch campaign design, technical SEO, content marketing, software design, and business operations.

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