5 Tips to speed up your XenForo forum

  1. Brivium

    Brivium - Aug 27, 2014 XenForo Services Staff Member


    There are 4 major reasons why & how you should to speed up your forum:
    • Visitors don’t want to wait, so they will leave your website if it takes too long to load. Therefore, speeding up your website will be an added-value that brings higher visitor engagement, retention and conversation.
    • Google has announced that website speed affects its search ranking: faster websites are ranked higher because they provide visitors with a better experience. And that’s quite sensible.
    • The number of active smartphone users around the world has topped 1 billion. Mobile devices are slower, yet users expect sites to load as quickly on their phones as they do on their browsers.
    • Faster site saves you money on the server software and hardware. One way to improve your page load time is to use dynamic tools such as web servers distributed across multiple locations to deliver content more efficiently, e.g. from a server located closer to the end user. This is known as a content delivery network or CDN. There are no requirements for installing additional server software or hardware, while choosing a CDN hosting over a standard one.
    You’ve wondered why your XenForo forum loads so slowly? Well, let’s check out 5 tips you can use now to speed up your XenForo forum.

    1. Choose the Right Hosting / Server

    Your site was probably put on the same server as hundreds or thousands of other sites. It could lead to slow speeds when many clients try to access this server at the same time.

    Therefore, ensure that you choose the right hosting from a reputable provider – one who can meet all of XenForo’s hosting requirements: a limited number of sites per server, server hardware support, server caching support, XenForo expert support…

    2. Enable Minify CSS

    Minification is the practice of removing unnecessary characters from code to reduce its size, removing unnecessary spacing, and optimizing the CSS code; thus improving load times. When CSS are compressed all comments are usually removed, as well as unneeded "white space" characters like space, new line, and tab. Additionally code can be further formatted onto a single line instead of multiple.


    In the case of CSS, this improves load time performance because the size of the file downloaded is often significantly, significantly reduced. Therefore, you have to enable it manually by following these steps:

    On the Top Menu, select Home > Options > Performance and turn the Minify CSS to on option.

    3. Enable Cache System

    Most websites have contents that are not changed frequently. Therefore, the theory of XenForo caching is very simple: the Cache system takes a copy of the whole page in its first load. When the user visits it again, this copy will be displayed without reloading the same images and files all over again. It can be advantageous to define a cache in order to save on processing time and database queries.

    Please make sure that you enable XenForo Cache system. The XenForo cache is an implementation of the Zend_Cache_Core front-end, and an extension of Zend_Cache_Backend for the back-end. This is a very simple step but it can increase the loading speed of your website a lot. You can do it as follows tutorials

    4. Optimization Settings (Images, CSS, Java Scripts…)

    Here are the optimizations that need to be used to speed up your website:
    • Images: don’t try to upload big scale pictures, resize them before uploading.
    • Style: start with a solid framework/style. Based on this reason, we built the Stylium Framework that super flexible. It is definitely a solid framework for quick page loads
    • Remove Sidebar Share Page: this is a simple way to increase your front page load time. Simply open the template sidebar_share_page and delete its content. Anytime you would like to re-add this to the sidebar, simply revert the template. By doing this you will minimize DNS look up on the front page.
    • Host Jquery with google: by not hosting the file yourself and by allowing google to host it, users that have downloaded it from google before will load it a lot faster. To change this go into your Admin Panel and navigate to Home > Options > Performance. Set the Jquery source to Google Ajax API CDN.
    • Clean up XenForo often and remove anything that you don’t need: unused addons, styles, “Not Found” queries…

    5. Check Your XenForo Forum Speed

    Don’t forget the final step – check your forum speed. You should do it before and after following all of these guidelines. And don’t be surprised when you see how much faster your website can be. You can do it by using one of these tools or services: YSlow Chrome plugin, Pingdom tools, Google PageSpeed or GTmetrix…

    Google Pagespeed
    Google PageSpeed – a tool which is offered by Google

    Ok, we think that’s enough to speed up your XenForo forum. Now it’s your turn. Have you come up with a unique way to speed up your website? Share your tips below.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
  2. Alex - Arvixe

    Alex - Arvixe - Aug 28, 2014 New Member

    We've been offering CloudFlare Railgun for free with our packages which seems to have positive results among our clients.

    Is anything like that being used on this site?
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2014
  3. Alisha Meredith

    Alisha Meredith - Jun 7, 2017 New Member