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First Render Time

Discussion in 'General XenForo Discussion and Feedback' started by Marcus, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    EDIT:

    I have displayed two waterfall images here from webpagetest.org for loading a topic with one server from London UK and one server from another country. The time the page is first rendered in IE 8 is more than 2 seconds. This is more than twice the time vbulletin uses for my topic pages.

    1. Are you happy with the page load? My first time users are the ones who have to be served the fastest as they are the ones who click on my ads.

    2. Will we see improvements on this in 1.1? As I have noticed the css are not compressed currently, there may be other settings currently available within xenforo that could help the first render time, too.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Floris

    Floris Guest

    Despite what these tests show, it's not the experience I share.
    Page almost never take more than a full second to load.
    If it does, it's because of the bigger [IMG]remote hosted images.
     
  3. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    This is because you have lots of images in your browser cache already. I focus most on the first time render experience for users who never were on my page before. They are the ones who click on ads and the first time experience is the most important one. My vbulletin loads all pages in less than 1 second. I thought xenforo could do better than that. As a sidenote: For members having a css file cache would definitely help much, this is not available for xenforo.
     
  4. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

  5. Floris

    Floris Guest

    I was talking about first time visits.
     
  6. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    Thanks Brogen, I have seen through the threads (not looked in the details, though). They are not about the first render time I am very concerned about.

    The first render time is the time when something (!) happens within the browser. So if you click on a link (say you found xenforo.com in google) the time starts. When the first element is going to be displayed (an image, the browser displays any element) you stop the time. The time you have measured is the first render time. And this is twice as slow as vb 4! A user who would click on a google link to my xenforo forum would see for more than two seconds - nothing! The browser is dead. This is a very bad experience.

    I suspect six (!!) images (at least four) to slow down the first render experience. css.php takes ages to load, so does surprisingly jquery.min.js There could be a server problem. But this does worry me unfortunately.
     
  7. Floris

    Floris Guest

    Very strange, this is not how I experience XenForo sites.
    As a matter of fact, I always have about a half a second of 'browser freeze' when I load a vB4 forum index or thread from a google search result. Even on page refreshes.
     
  8. Deebs

    Deebs Well-Known Member

    Looking at those graphs they highlight one thing, all the slowdowns are due to external sites, be it Facebook, Google or Gravatar. I can guarantee you that any form of slowdown will be down to external sites, whether it be loading an external image or talking to their API.
     
    Kim likes this.
  9. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    Deebs, the first render time is completely independent from all other webpages, only xenforo files are loaded here.

    This is the waterfall for a regular user (who has everything in cache). The server currently takes ages to produce the webpage.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    I only care until the first vertical green line in the attached watefall diagrams (first render time). The rest is of no concern for me now :)
     
  11. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    From Dulles (US) it looks at least something better. Not in any case good - worse than vbulletin 4. Surprise - xenforo is hosted from Houston, TX!
     

    Attached Files:

  12. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    Stock install is 32% slower generating the whole page than the install with disabling subforums on my page. Subforums are slowing down page generation time too much. Stock install:

    With disabling subforums
    I removed this from template node_forum_level_2 to not render subforums on forum start page
    Code:
     <xen:if is="{$renderedChildren} AND {$level} == 2">
    <div class="Popup subForumsPopup">
    <a href="{xen:link forums, $forum}" rel="Menu" class="cloaked" data-closemenu="true"><span class="dt">{xen:phrase sub_forums}:</span> {xen:number $forum.childCount}</a>
    
    <div class="Menu JsOnly subForumsMenu">
    <div class="primaryContent menuHeader">
    <h3>{$forum.title}</h3>
    <div class="muted">{xen:phrase sub_forums}</div>
    </div>
    <ol class="secondaryContent blockLinksList">
    <xen:foreach loop="$renderedChildren" value="$child">
    {xen:raw $child}
    </xen:foreach>
    </ol>
    </div>
    </div>
    </xen:if>
    
    (from http://xenforo.com/community/thread...xenforo-to-the-big-4.20174/page-2#post-260485)
     
  13. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    I'm not sure this can be classed as a bug.

    By definition, the more content you load, the longer it will take.
     
    CyberAP likes this.
  14. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    Yes, this is right. What I meant here, it is not the content to download I measured, it is the page generation time - the time PHP needs to process.

    The same you can see in vb 4 (not in vb 3). You can speed up your vb 4 forum to a similar extend like I outlined here by not render data in templates but directly in PHP.
     
  15. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    In which case it's a suggestion then, not a bug.
     
  16. CyberAP

    CyberAP Well-Known Member

    This one should be AJAX'ed :)
     
    Marcus likes this.
  17. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    Of course this can be filed under minor suggestions. As the slow down is so noticeable I thought it could be a bug within the template engine.
     
  18. Vincent

    Vincent Well-Known Member

    It might look noticeable when looking at the numbers, but believe me, there's nothing you can do in 0.0315 seconds :)
     
  19. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    It was with a forum and 1 user online (me). Imagine a forum with hundreds or thousands users online. Then 32% additional server ressources needed can be quite expensive.

    Another thing is that you have a better google SEO ranking the faster your page is. And small increases in speed are noticed. On the same side, the faster the ad is served, the more likely a user (1) sees the ad and (2) reacts to the ad banner ("click").
     
    Vincent likes this.
  20. Marcus

    Marcus Well-Known Member

    After some new tries this is the average I get these results:
    • 0.085 seconds (average) without subforums
    • 0.13 seconds (minimum) with subforums
    The forum start page with subforums is produced 50% slower than without subforums. A faster template engine could do wonders.
     
    Vincent likes this.

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