WordPress 3.5.2 + W3 Total Cache 0.9.2.11 Plugin
This article assumes that you have already completed the installation of your WordPress website and database. If you have not completed this, please read the following article: Install and Use WordPress
In this article we will explains how to configure WordPress with W3 Total Cache plugin.
The steps below are best practices and have been tested and verified to optimize performance on a default installation of WordPress with default theme.
Download the WordPress Plugin W3 Total Cache: Deactivate and delete any other caching plugin you may be using. Make sure wp-content/ and wp-content/uploads/ (temporarily) has 777 permissions before proceeding.
Login as an administrator to your WordPress control panel. On the left hand menu, click on the "Plugins" tab then "Add New."
Search for “W3 Total Cache” and click “Install Now.” If you have already downloaded the plugin, click the "Upload" link, find the .zip file you download, and click "Install Now". You can also unzip and use an FTP client to upload the plugin to your plugins directory (wp-content/plugins/).
In all cases, wp-content/plugins/w3-total-cache/ should exist when completed.
If successfully installed you should see: Successfully installed the plugin “W3 Total Cache 0.9.2.11.”
For your convenience here is the url for the version used for this article: http://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/w3-total-cache.0.9.2.11.zip
If you prefer the most recent version of W3TC and are having trouble installing it through WordPress, you can visit the W3TC project page.
Locate and activate the plugin on the "Plugins" page. Page caching will automatically be running in basic mode. Set the permissions of wp-content and wp-content/uploads back to 755
Now click the "Settings" link to proceed to the "General" tab and select your caching methods for page, database, and minify. In most cases, "disk enhanced" mode for page cache; "disk" mode for minify; and "disk" mode for database caching are "good" settings.
On the "Minify Settings" tab, all of the recommended settings are preset. Use the help button to simplify discovery of your CSS and JS files and groups. Pay close attention to the method and location of your JS group embeddings. See the plugin's FAQ for more information on usage. Save changes for the Minify Settings section
If you already have a content delivery network (CDN) provider, proceed to the "Content Delivery Network" tab and populate the fields and set your preferences. If using Rackspace Cloud Files as your CDN Please select the Rackspace Cloud Files drop down.
If you do not use the Media Library, you will need to import your images etc into the default locations. Use the Media Library Import Tool on the "Content Delivery Network" tab to perform this task.
If you do not have a CDN provider, you can still improve your website's performance using the "Self-hosted" method. On your own server, create a subdomain and matching DNS Zone record; e.g. static.domain.com and configure FTP options on the "Content Delivery Network" tab accordingly. Be sure to FTP upload the appropriate files, using the available upload buttons.
If using Rackspace Cloud Files as your CDN, please login to your New Cloud Control Panel at mycloud.rackspace.com, click on your username in the upper-right, then select the Classic Cloud Control Panel from the menu that appears. On the left-hand menu in the Classic Cloud Control Panel click “Your Account,” then “API access”. If you do not have Cloud Files configured you will have to add it under your hosting tab. If it is not available please contact Rackspace Cloud Sales or Support.
Your Cloud Files hostname can be found by going back to your main Classic Cloud Control Panel. Click the "Files" tab in the product list across the top of the page. Click on the gear menu next to your container (if one does not exist, you will need to create one) and select the "Make Public (Enable CDN)" option then click the "Publish to CDN" button. Once the container is published you can click on the gear icon next to the container again and choose the "View All Links" option to view the container's hostname.
Please take note of your username and api key as well as your Cloud Files hostname. These will be needed when configuring W3 Total Cache. Click on the Content Delivery network (CDN) to modify the settings.
Under the "Configuration" section type your username and API key here. You can also create the container for your website by typing the name in the container field and clicking "Create Container." This will automatically populate the hostname.
Under SSL Support select (auto detect)
Copy your Cloud Files hostname and paste it in the section “Replace Site's Hostname With” It will look like this: http://c000XXX60X1.cdn2 .( cloudfiles.rackspacecloud.com or CNAME)
Save changes for the CDN section
Under the General Section please click on the “Upload XXXX Files” for each section that is checked.
In your WordPress control panel on the left hand menu under “Performance” click on “General Settings” to complete.
On the "Browser Cache" tab, HTTP compression is enabled by default. Make sure to enable other options to suit your goals. Save changes for the Browser Cache settings
On the general tab click on "Upload Includes" then start when the new page opens. Complete the same steps for all that are checked under the "General Settings" section if they were not previously completed.
After you upload the content to the CDN please ensure that you select "Empty all cache" option under the "General Settings" section. You can then preview the CDN functionality under the General tab by selecting Preview or you can deploy it.
If you need further assistance please feel free to click on the down arrow next to the “Viewing” section on the “General Settings” page for install help.
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