W3 Total cache and WP Super cache are the two most popular choices when it comes to choosing which caching plugin to use on your WordPress site. Both of these plugins work great but this tutorial will show you how to configure WP Super Cache settings to make your WordPress site load faster. If you use W3 Total cache, be sure to use our recommended W3 Total Cache settings.
WP Super Cache is one of the most popular caching plugins on the market, and it is used by millions of WordPress websites worldwide. This plugin speeds up your blog by serving up static pages to visitors who are not logged in or have left comments. In addition, this plugin can reduce the burden on your server, especially when your site is experiencing a heavy traffic.
The plugin is compatible with both Apache and Nginx web servers.
Another best thing about WP super cache is that it’s lightweight and super easy to setup because of its straight-forward settings.
Without any further ado, let’s get started to improve your website’s performance with this plugin.
Recommended WP Super Cache Settings
First of all, you need to install the plugin and activate it. Upon activation, go to Settings > WP Super Cache to open the WP Super Cache configuration page.
Enable caching by selecting Caching On button and click on Update Status.
1. Check “Cache hits to this website for quick access”.
2. Check the “Use mod_rewrite to serve cache files” option.
Use mod_rewrite to serve cache files: Out of all the caching methods, mod_rewrite is the fastest option, because it completely bypasses PHP and serve cached pages directly. This makes your site load faster even on slow, underpowered servers.
If mod_rewrite is disabled on your server, then you should use the “Use PHP to serve cache files” option. It is almost as fast as Mod_Rewrite but uses PHP to serve the cached pages. It will consume more CPU as it rely on PHP.
3. Check “Compress pages so they’re served more quickly to visitors”. – (This option enables Gzip Compression to make your site faster.)
4. Check “Don’t cache pages for known users”.
5. Check “Cache rebuild. Serve a supercache file to anonymous users while a new file is being generated”.
6. Check “Mobile device support”.
7. Uncheck “Coarse file locking”.
8. Click Update Status to apply changes. You should now see a warning message asking you to “Update Mod_Rewrite Rules”.
9. Scroll down and click “Update the mod_rewrite rules” button.
Once updated successfully, the yellow box will turn green and be labeled “Mod rewrite rules updated”.
Expiry Time & Garbage Collection
Under Expiry Time & Garbage Collection, you can specify how long the cached data remains fresh. By default, the “Cache Timeout” value is set to 3600 seconds (1 hour), which is absolutely fine for most sites.
You can adjust this setting based on how often do you update your content. If you have a very busy site, you can decrease the value to something like 1800 seconds. If your site is not updated often, you can increase the timeout value to 86400 seconds (1 day) with weekly refresh schedule.
Leave all other settings in their default under Advanced tab.
If you use a CDN, you can integrate your CDN provider with WP Super cache here. If you are not using a CDN, just skip this section.
WP Super Cache allows you to preload all the posts/pages on your site beforehand so that visitors are always served cached content in the lowest possible time. It is particularly useful for sites which are not updated very frequently.
The problem with preload is that it puts a lot of additional load on your server as it tries to cache your entire WordPress site periodically.
In general, I don’t recommend using this feature, so leave this section untouched.
Now that you have sucessfully enabled the caching in your WordPress site, you should see a speed improvement when run your site through page speed tool like GTmetrix.
I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial, and if you have any questions, please let us know in the comments below.