post

W3 Total Cache Has Been A Total Frustration

W3 Total Cache Has Been My Frustration

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Over the past few weeks I’ve had some issues with plugins (in particular W3 Total Cache) and the theme I have installed, Pagelines.

Initially I had thought it was problems with CloudFlare. Every now and again I kept getting an error page from CloudFlare stating that my website was down.

Every few days my theme would also revert to its default settings and no matter how hard I tried I couldn’t get it to stop doing this.

The last straw came when I updated my favourite plugin, CommentLuv to the latest version.

When I tried to click back into the WordPress Dashboard disaster struck. All I could see were error messages and I couldn’t get into the dashboard at all.

Andy Bailey really helped me out with the situation and after deleting a couple of plugins and reinstalling them via ftp I was back up and running again.

I must admit I did sit for a few minutes thinking I had just lost everything and considering whether I should just give up.

Each time I updated CommentLuv though the same thing would happen. I’d have to delete some plugins and then reinstall them to get my blog back up and running.

I contacted Andy again and he suggested that it was perhaps the caching plugin I had installed, W3 Total Cache, and not Cloudflare that was causing the issues.

Sure enough, I uninstalled the caching plugin and after a few days my website stabilised. My theme stopped reverting back to its defaults and the next time I updated CommentLuv I had no issues with other plugins.

I’ve not really seen much of a speed improvement with W3 Total Cache lately and I suspect that was because it was incompatible with my theme and some of the other plugins I have.

WP Super Cache

Another thing that Andy Bailey mentioned to me was that instead of using W3 Total Cache on his sites he now uses WP Super Cache.

I’ve been reluctant to activate another caching plugin on my blog since the issues I’ve had so it’s taken me a few weeks to finally get around to testing things out.

I’ve set up WP Super Cache this morning based on the settings advised by my web host.

Next, I checked to make sure my theme hadn’t gone back its defaults. Fingers crossed so far it’s looking stable.

Then I checked the load time on Pingdom Tools. After installing WP Super Cache with the recommended settings my website load time had decreased from 5.5 seconds to around 2 seconds.

That’s a pretty good decrease in load time. There’s some plugins that are taking up load time still so they may need to go unfortunately.

I’ll be monitoring things over the next few days to make sure nothing untoward happens but it looks to me as though WP Super Cache is a good option for me.

Now don’t get me wrong here, I’m really not having a pop at W3 Total Cache. I know many people swear by it and have seen some great results from using it.

I’ve just found that it doesn’t work with my site. It’s also a complicated plugin and I struggled to understand what all the options really did.

Do You Use W3 Total Cache Or WP Super Cache?

Do you use a caching plugin on your blog? If you do, which one and how are you finding it? If you don’t, are there any particular reasons why not?

P.S. I’d be grateful if you could share this post on your favourite social media sites!

Tim Bonner

Tim Bonner is a Stay At Home Dad, Blogger and Internet Marketer. Learn more about him here.
  • dadblunders

    Tim,

    I remember trying out W3 Total Cache….it gave me nothing but headaches. I never found it that “easy” and was not overly happy when I tried it out. A friend recommended I try out Quick Cache. They explained it was relatively simple to set up and you just let it do it’s work. I have been totally happy with it thus far. It decreased my time very similar to yours. I know there is nothing more frustrating than trying to figure out which plug-in is messing up your site though….sigh

    Aaron

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Aaron

      Sounds as though Quick Cache is really working for you. I have heard of that caching plugin too.

      I think WP Super Cache is somewhere in between Quick Cache and W3 Total Cache in terms of complexity. Although both WP Super Cache and Quick Cache work straight “out of the box”.

      I just got totally confused with W3 Total Cache. I had no idea what some of the options were!

      I hope you’re having a great weekend Aaron.

      Tim

      • http://allbloggingtips.com Ammar Ali

        I’ve installed mobile plugin for my blog. But due to W3 Total Cache. It was not working.

        I switched form W3 Total Cache to Super Cache! It’s not working perfect. :D

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          Hey Ammar

          That’s great news! I’m glad that WP Super Cache is working for you too :-).

          Have a great weekend.

          Tim

      • http://workehow.com/ praveen

        I observed you are using flare plugin as well, when i tried to use w3 total cache with flare plugin it didn’t work on my site (the count wont show) so i ended up with wp super cache plugin

        • Tim Bonner

          Hi Praveen

          I’ve not had any real issues with my site since I switched from W3 Total Cache to WP Super Cache.

          I hadn’t realised there was an issue with the Flare Plugin and W3 Total Cache. Thank you for letting me know.

          I’m glad though that I switched to WP Super Cache some months back!

  • Sapna

    Hi Tim

    As you have mentioned, now I am bit wary of updating commentluv while W3 Total cache being enabled.But I must say W3 total cache at times misbehaves, whenever I make changes on my blog.
    The blog takes longer than expected time to display the new changes and at times shows up the changes on few posts only. I think now I should also start looking for alternatives.

    Thanks for sharing your experience.

    Sapna

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Sapna

      I blamed the issues I was having for quite a while on Cloudflare and it was only after I had the problems with CommentLuv and I spoke to Andy Bailey that it became clear that it was W3 Total Cache that was the problem. This may have just been on my blog though.

      Whenever I tried to update CommentLuv I got error messages for the nRelate plugins I have installed. I had to keep uninstalling them every time I updated CommentLuv otherwise I couldn’t get back into my WordPress dashboard. I really like the nRelate plugins so I really didn’t want to sacrifice them.

      W3 Total Cache was also causing no end of problems with the Pagelines theme I have installed too. It just kept reverting back to the default settings which meant that none of my blog posts would be seen. Disaster!

      I’ve got no complaints with WP Super Cache so far. Everything seems stable and working well. I also trust Andy Bailey’s judgement. I have heard that both Quick Cache and Hyper Cache are also good alternatives to WP Super Cache. However, they do slightly less than WP Super Cache, as I understand, it in terms of the caching options.

      Happy Cache hunting! Let me know how you get on if you do change over to a different plugin.

      Tim

  • http://www.slymarketing.com Jens P. Berget

    I used to have the same issues as you, and I have been using several cache plugins. I am back with W3 Total Cache, and it’s working great. But, the reason it’s working as good as it is, is that it’s included in my hosting, and my host has done all the configuration :)

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      That sounds like the perfect solution Jens; your web host setting everything up for you on W3 Total Cache.

      I just didn’t have a clue about all of the options and I think the minifying ones were causing the issues.

      I’m glad that it’s working so well for you though Jens.

  • http://writeclever.com/ Sue Neal

    Hi Tim,

    I really feel for you – those ‘heart in mouth’ moments when it looks as if everything’s wrecked are horrible. I had one a few weeks ago when some strange script appeared on my site, and it turned out one of my social sharing plugins was obviously incompatible with the latest WP update – fortunately I was easily able to resolve it by removing the plugin, but it was a nasty scare – it makes you realise how vulnerable you are.

    I don’t use a caching plugin on my blog because I was advised against it by a techie contact I have a lot of respect for – he’s created plugins and WP themes. He said that hosting companies encourage people to use caching plugins because they save them space, but that unless you have absolutely masses of traffic it’s not worth risking them because he reckons they can cause more trouble than they’re worth. He also said that if they do cause problems, they’re the sort that can be difficult to resolve. So I’ve decided to live without one unless and until it becomes essential,

    I hope your problem’s resolved now. Andy Bailey’s really helpful, isn’t he? He sorted me out recently when I had that issue with one or two visitors (like you!) being rejected as spambots!

    Sue

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Sue

      I know what you mean about those ‘heart in the mouth’ moments; that was certainly one of them.

      As I understand it and as you mention, the more traffic you get the more use a caching plugin will be. I’m on a shared server with Hostgator so I think it’s probably important that I have one.

      If you get lots and lots of traffic you’re either going to have to move to a VPS or a dedicated server eventually anyway but at least with a caching plugin it may slow that requirement down a little!

      I found that with having the caching plugin activated it really sped up the load time of my site up so I’m pleased for that reason. At the same time, I’m sure deactivating the plugin may cause more problems, so once you’re in there’s probably no turning back!

      I certainly trust Andy Bailey’s advice and if he uses WP Super Cache then I’m happy enough to dive in and see what happens :-).

      Things are looking really stable with WP Super Cache on board Sue so fingers crossed it remains that way.

      I hope you’ve had a great weekend Sue and I’ll definitely be responding to your email tomorrow.

      Tim

  • http://beingchirpy.com Aditya

    W3 Total cache, I’d say will give a few headaches to anyone and I too have had to face em’. I found a guide on configuring it suitably and once I implemented all the steps the guide suggested, things have been pretty good. The caching system is terrific and your website loads in a flash.

    Your blog reverting to default settings reminds me of the time when my blog was hacked recently. A good bunch of backups saved my butt but I had to work on the W3 total cache all over again. Though the results are satisfactory, the working part is painful.

    So, how about making the shift to WP Super cache? Would you recommend it? Anything like a tiny review?

    Anyway I’m glad things are fine with you now and hope they stay the same :)

    Good luck!

    Aditya

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Aditya

      Welcome to my blog. It’s great to see you.

      To be honest I didn’t see a great deal of speed difference when I had W3 Total Cache installed on my blog but that could have been because I just didn’t understand what settings I should be using.

      I had originally blamed my blog reverting back to the theme’s default settings on Cloudflare but since removing W3 Total Cache it has been stable. It was also causing issues with both CommentLuv and the nRelate plugins I have on my blog.

      WP Super Cache so far seems to be working well. It’s too early for me to say whether I would recommend it or not but I plan to do a review once it’s had time to settle in :-).

      Thanks for your well wishes and things are looking much more stable now.

      Enjoy the rest of your weekend and thank you for your comments Aditya.

      Tim

    • http://www.blogmarketingbook.com Abhinav Jain

      Hi Aditya you have mentioned you found a guide to setup W3 Total cache can you share the link of the same guide as i am not able to configure it properly

  • http://joshuawilner.com/ Josh

    Hi Tim,

    That is exactly why I don’t use that plugin. WP Supecache has worked pretty well for me, so I have been happy about that.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Josh

      Glad to hear you’re on WP Super Cache as well Josh! Sounds as though I made the right decision :-).

  • http://necessityofchange.com Mary Stephenson

    Hi Tim

    I tried W3 Total Cache about a year ago and it made a list out of my site. It totally freaked me out. I uninstalled it and everything went back to normal. I decided it just wasn’t worth going through that again.

    I have found that once in awhile some plug-ins play havoc with others and once that happens I get a little cautious in trying similar ones out. Knowing that something could go crashing down with one click of the mouse makes me think twice about adding something new.

    Mary

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Mary

      Gosh, that would have freaked me out too!

      It sounds as though W3 Total Cache does have some compatibility problems with themes and plugins. I’d glad things are going back to being stable again on my blog.

      WP Super Cache has worked like a dream so far. It’s just sitting there on my blog doing its stuff and hasn’t once caused any problems :-).

      Great to see you Mary and thank you for letting me know of your experience with W3 Total Cache too.

      Have a great week.

      Tim

  • http://billdorman.me Bill Dorman

    Yeah, good luck with that; I am NOT the person you need to reach out to to fix anything like that.

    Frustrating I’m sure…..

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Bill

      No problem, you made my day by commenting mate!

      Hope you’re well.

  • http://inspiretothrive.com Lisa

    Hi Bill, I haven’t used any of the cache plug-ins for reading stories like yours. I had a bad experience with a plug-in a while back and am not found of trying new ones unless I’ve read a lot about them. Love to hear more on the WP cache plugin after you have used it a while Bill. I’d consider it then. Thanks for the informative post on these type of plug-ins.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Lisa

      Were you thinking of Mr Dorman when you wrote your comment? :-)

      I don’t blame you for not trying out new plugins that you don’t know so well.

      I was hesitant to use WP Super Cache after my experience with W3 Total Cache but I trusted Andy Bailey on that one and gave it a go.

      It’s not caused any issues so far and I’m happy with the speed increase.

      I’m going to do another blog post about my experiences with it in a few weeks time once it’s settled in so I’ll definitely keep you posted.

      Have a great week Lisa.

      Tim

      • http://billdorman.me Bill Dorman

        Of course she was thinking of me…………:).

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          That’ll be the Dorman charm!

      • http://inspiretothrive.com Lisa

        LOL, I’m sorry Tim, I must have been there prior and my brain didn’t work fast as my fingers.

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          No problem Lisa :-) I don’t mind being mistaken for Bill for a bit…

  • http://violatam.com Viola Tam

    Hi Tim,

    As a relatively new blogger, I am happy to have a blog out there for sharing. All those plug-ins have given enough headache when I first had my blog set up.

    I was warned not to update ANY plug-ins as they may upset the blog’s function. I am not sure what my next step may be. I would probably go to a friend who can help me out. Any suggestions from you?

    Sorry that I do not have much value to share. Your other readers are so knowledgeable!

    Viola The Business Mum

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Viola

      There are so many plugins out there, I agree it’s like a minefield!

      There are many plugins I use which I couldn’t live without such as to backup my blog or to keep things secure.

      Don’t apologise though, we’re all on a learning curve when it comes to plugins.

      I got a lot of my ideas about which plugins to use from Adrienne but I also use alternative ones to her as well.

      I could do a post in a couple of weeks time about the plugins I have installed if that would help?

  • http://marketingwithsergio.com Sergio Felix

    Hey Tim, I’m really glad you’ve found a solution for caching and optimizing the load speeds of your blog.

    I was using W3TC in the past, then I had a few issues and found out that even with minimum tweaking, the plugin was hurting more my load speeds than without it.

    A second event that made me decide stop using it (at least for a while) was that I have a lot of trust in HostGator SysAdmins and Server tech people, they strongly encourage the use of WP Super Cache instead of W3TC.

    Right now I’m not using anything to cache my blog and I’m running just fine, I will, however, have to test WP Super Cache by myself since I want to include at least one caching option for my blogging training.

    So I’ll cross my fingers too and hope everything goes okay in my side! ;-)

    Sergio

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Sergio

      I just didn’t understand what W3TC was all about. There were just too many options available. I think the minifying options were really causing havoc on my blog!

      I noticed on the HostGator help pages that WP Super Cache is the plugin they recommend, although they sort of mention W3TC as well.

      I’ve not had any issues with WP Super Cache since I started using it. You should definitely try it out mate and it would be a good one to include in your blogging training if you find it useful.

      Fingers crossed with it and I hope it works ok for you!

      Tim

  • Andrew Stark

    Hi Tim,

    I’m having all sorts of issues with slow load times, I was over 30 seconds on pingdom which is not good.

    Will need to have a play and discussion on sites like the thesis forum about what’s causing the slowness.

    Andrew

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Andrew

      My blog was taking around the same time to load as yours a while back on Pingdom.

      I got rid of a few plugins and amalgamated a few others with the Add to All plugin. Some plugins just didn’t seem to like working together.

      Also, one of the problems I had was with images. I added the WP Smush.It and LazyLoader plugins which seems to have calmed things down a bit.

      Best of luck with finding the answer. Did you try the P3 plugin as well to see if there are any glaringly obvious plugins which are taking forever to load?

      Tim

  • Khaja moin

    I use W3 Total Cache plugin. But till now I didn`t face any problems with this plugin.
    Anyway will check with the W3 super cache plugin.
    Seems it`s working good on your blog.
    Thanks for recommending this plugin.

    ~@Khajamoin1

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Khaja

      If W3 Total Cache is working for you then I wouldn’t change over unless you really want to.

      I think in terms of options W3 Total Cache has many more than WP Super Cache and that’s where my problems began and ended. I had no idea what the correct set up should be.

      The set up with WP Super Cache is much more straightforward.

  • Theodore Nwangene

    Hi Tim,
    I’m sorry for that but the good news now is that you finally discovered what was causing the problem and then resolved it.

    I’ve had such case before but with another plugin called Photodropper. I’m also using W3 Total Cache and I’ve never had any issue with it but i think i will also checkout Wp Super Cache so i can be able to compare the two based on performance.

    Although, I’ve heard of Wp super cache before but has never tried it. Now i will.

    Thanks for sharing man and do have a blissful week.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Theodore

      Great to see you.

      I thought I had resolved the issue of my theme reverting back to it’s default settings but it seems to have happened again earlier today!

      I don’t think it can be a caching issue as everything is working fine in that department.

      I will need to contact Pagelines about it and see if they can shed any light on it.

      WP Super Cache is so much easier to understand than W3 Total Cache. Although I know lots of people swear by W3 Total Cache and it does have more options.

      I found that W3 Total Cache didn’t really increase the speed of my blog that much whereas WP Super Cache has increased it by around 65%.

      Let me know how you get on if you do try it.

      Enjoy the rest of your week Theodore.

      Tim

  • http://adriennesmith.net/ Adrienne

    Hey Tim,

    I’ve had the same issues with that plug-in too which is why I quit using one.

    So this week I’ve had more issues with my site and my hosting suggested I use WP Super Cache. I did upload it but it seems to make my site even slower. More issues continued so I’m working with a good friend today and he suggested I go back to W3 Total Cache. I shared the same concerns with him that you did here about that plug-in. Obviously he’s never had any problems with it so maybe it was in the settings or something. These things are over my head I admit.

    I’m praying things start looking up instead of the other way around. So sorry you had these issues but we can sympathize with you. Not all caching plug-ins are created equal.

    Good luck!

    ~Adrienne

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Adrienne

      I think with all of the caching plugins it can be a little hit and miss. I’ve read similar speed issues in terms of slowing sites down for both W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache. So far though WP Super Cache has been behaving which I’m grateful for. I guess it’s trial and error unfortunately.

      I’m sorry to hear about more issues that you’re having. When I left a comment on your site, it timed out and I didn’t know whether it had saved or not. When I tried to get back in, I got an error message saying that a connection with the database couldn’t be established. I got in after a couple of minutes though and everything seemed fine again.

      I had no idea which settings to use on W3 Total Cache so it’s great that you have someone that knows what to do! I feel for you though Adrienne.

      I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed that the issues you’re having are resolved sooner rather than later!

      I hope things turn around for you in the rest of the week Adrienne.

      Tim

  • http://isocialable.com Naven

    I experienced with W3 Total Cache on one of my site that my uploaded images on posts are not appeared after publishing it and when I de-activated the Plug-In images are fine.

    WP Super Cache is best alternative and its functionality is easy to understand.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Naven

      Great to see you at my blog and thank you for visiting.

      It sounds as though WP Super Cache works well for you too. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that everything remains stable on my blog now that WP Super Cache is installed.

      Thank you for your comments and I hope to see you again soon.

      Tim

  • http://www.mazzastick.com Justin

    Hey Tim,
    I got rid of W3 Total Cache about a year ago. There is no thing more frustrating than having your website getting all “wonky.” I had some problems on my site a couple of weeks ago and after doing some research on WP forums I found out it was the JetPack plugin that I had to fix.

    Take Care.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Justin

      Sounds like I’m a bit behind the times! I’m glad I got rid of W3 Total Cache though. It was just too complicated.

      I had an issue with JetPack when I updated to the latest version of WordPress. I few of my images were giving an error message. I had to shut down part of JetPack to get that sorted.

      Did you get the problem fixed on your site?

      • http://www.mazzastick.com Justin

        I had to remove or change something in JetPack in order to correct it. I don’t recall exactly what I had to do but it worked. I am still using JetPack by the way.

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          I still use JetPack as well. It was Photon that was causing the problems on my blog, which came with the latest WordPress update.

          I just deactivated that and everything was fine again.

  • http://www.mayura4ever.com Mayura

    Hi Tim,

    Sorry about the circumstances you had but you have made it :) We always need to ready for technical issues, right?

    Well, I’m not using any plugins as I’m not on WordPress but Blogger platform mate. But I’ve been using WP Super Cache for one of my client website and it’s running smoothly without any issues but improved performance a bit. However I didn’t bother to use W3 Total Cache and I’ve seen many recommendations on the Web too.

    But as I’ve expereinced it depends on what type of theme or resources we are depends on and you are rightly pointed it out, ’cause I’ve seen when something goes wrong for someone, he may try to recommend that for every others over and over without thinking about variation of blogs and platforms other people use.

    Most importantly, someone goes through the same situation might find this post a helpful one to follow and see W3 Total Cache is the reason for the issue :) Let’s hope for it mate.

    Have a issue free week there Tim :)

    Cheers…

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Mayura

      I’ve not really experienced Blogger before as WordPress is the platform which was recommended to me. Blogger does sound pretty good too though.

      WP Super Cache hasn’t caused me any hassles as yet. I’m still keeping an eye on the theme though as it went back to the default settings again yesterday morning. I’ve no idea why it’s doing that.

      W3 Total Cache caused more problems than it helped with my blog’s speed. I felt completely overwhelmed by the amount of options there were. I’m sure if you’re knowledgeable on that side of things it would be a breeze but for me I just struggled to see what on earth I should be doing.

      Here’s to an issue free week Mayura. Thanks mate.

  • Annie André

    I’ve been in a perpetual cache plugin hell since decembre 15th. I stopped using super cache it was claching with amazon cloudfront in conjunction with my optin plugin wpsuubscribers. ( which when i googled this is a very prevelant problem with many people).

    i’ve tried since to install total clache but it also clashes with wpsubscribers plugin. I absolutely need pretty email signup forms and love wpsubscribers and i need caching and i need a cloudfront but the combo i have just does not work.

    I just hate all this techno hello. I do love total cache but can’t turn it on unless i want my signup boxes to go away. It’s a virtual nightmare.

    Anyways, i think i found the solution, switching
    1- from mailchimp to aweber, since i’m reaching the paid threshold soon
    2- dumping WP subscribers since it clashes with amazon cloudfront
    3- going with a new pretty optin plugin called “hybrid connect” which looks amazing. http://hybrid-connect.com/

    Anyways, can’t wait to get all this silly load time issue behind me. It’s such a pain in the ARSE!

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Annie

      Sorry to hear about your caching plugin hell!

      I really like the opt-in forms on your blog and was close to getting WP Subscribers just because of it. I’m glad I haven’t now as I wasn’t aware of the issues with caching plugins. Thanks for the heads up on that!

      Hybrid Connect looks amazing. I’m seriously considering getting it too. I asked their support desk about caching plugins and in particular WP Super Cache and they came back with the response below.

      Yes, Hybrid Connect works with WP Super Cache, but you will have to flush the cache, when you’re working with it and want to see changes on the front end. WPSC is quite aggressive with the caching, so if you just keep it running, you might not see new opt-in forms and changes you make to them, on the front end.

      It does seem to suggest that there may be similar problems as with WP Subscribers in that you might not see your opt-in forms if you have a caching plugin running.

      Not sure whether to dive in and see whether it works or hold back.

      I hope you get your load time issues sorted soon Annie and I’d be interested to hear if you do get Hybrid Connect what you think.

      • Annie André

        Hey Tim,
        Sorry i think i didn’t explain myself well.
        WP Subscribers plugin is great. It works just find with any cach plugins.
        WP subscribers does not work well with Amazon cloudfront CDN. I Need CDN to speed up my site below 3 seconds. The caching plugin isn’t doing the job because my site is image and video heavy.

        I just bought Hybrid and I’ll let you know how it goes. What i love about hybrid is you can do split testing with it. Say i want to test a blue button or red button or one “image” vs another image for my free giveaway. You can do all that. They seem to have all the same functionality of WP subscribers but i’m not sure yet since i haven’t installed it yet. I will get it all done this week though. You’ll be the first to know. K?
        Annie

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          No problem Annie. I think I got my wires crossed.

          I’m very interested in Hybrid Connect, so it would be great to know what you think :-).

          Thanks Annie. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

  • http://pauline-bennett.com/ Pauline

    Hi Tim
    What a nightmare for you! I use W3 Total cache and have not experienced any problems so far but did have a bad moment the other day after an update for a different plugin, in the end I had to delete it and re-install it, it works fine now.
    I can be such a headache when thing go wrong with our blogs, I do think most of the time the problems arise with plugins but we do need them…..
    I hope it all stays working well for you now, have a great weekend.
    Pauline

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Pauline

      I’m glad that W3 Total Cache is working for you. I think it’s hit and miss with all caching plugins and you just have to find one that works with your set up.

      That moment when a plugin updates and something goes wrong is a bit of a heart stopper isn’t it! There were so many errors happening when I updated CommentLuv and then when I couldn’t get back into the dashboard my heart sank. Still, lessons were learnt and everything turned out ok in the end.

      We definitely need plugins though I agree. My blog just wouldn’t work the same without them!

      Enjoy the rest of the weekend Pauline.

  • http://authoritywebsiteincome.com Jon

    I have switched from W3 Total Cache to Super Cache. It is much easier to use and the performance difference isn’t measurable for me.

    Thanks for the tips on how to get the most of the caching plugin!

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Jon

      Welcome to my blog and thanks for visiting.

      I’m finding WP Super Cache much easier to use too and, if anything, I find my blog is a little quicker than with W3 Total Cache, so win win situation!

      Glad to hear it’s also working well for you too :-).

      Thank you for your comments Jon and I hope to see you again soon.

      Tim

  • http://www.shalusharma.com/ Shalu Sharma

    I have also been hearing some issues with the W3 Total Cache plugin but seems to be working on many blogs despite having the commentluv plugin. I was using the WP Super Cache plugin but was recommended to use the W3.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Shalu

      I think it all depends on your blog set up, as in plugins and theme, as to whether there are any issues with W3 Total Cache.

      With mine, I don’t think that CommentLuv was necessarily the cause but the catalyst. It appears that W3 Total Cache was also conflicting with the nRelate plugins I have on my blog.

      So far at least WP Super Cache is stable and I’m certainly grateful for that! I’m glad that W3 Total Cache is working well for you though.

  • http://www.techvela.com Mohammad ismail

    This is once of the best and informative post i have read, some people are posting articles without knowing the basic step of communication and writing skills.
    You have the ability and know the way of how to convince your reader to read the whole article, very creative post, just keep it going.
    Thank you :)

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Mohammad

      Thank you for visiting my blog and for your kind comments.

      I hope you’ll stop by again soon.

      Tim

  • Susan Silver

    W3 cache was also a nightmare for me. Installed WP supercache becomes my host recommended it to. Same reduction in speed and I have had no issues. Loves it.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Susan

      Welcome to my blog. It’s great to see you.

      Sounds as if we’ve had similar experiences of both W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache. Glad to hear that WP Super Cache is also working well for you too!

      Thank you for your comments and I hope to see you again soon.

      Tim

  • http://www.seojus.com Justin Musiker

    Hi Tim,

    I have only used WP Super Cache. Most people do not understand all the options and settings that are involved in these Caching Plugins. The most frustrating for me is when I update a post or page, in order for me to see the newly updated info, I have to delete the cache, then refresh the page. I believe that can be avoided by altering some of the settings, but I have not taught myself about Apache Servers, and am not a advanced PHP Programmer. Anyhoo, great post, and hope that this new plugin works great for you! BTW, found you through WonderofTech

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Justin

      Thank you for visiting my blog and via Carolyn’s brilliant blog too :-).

      That would certainly be frustrating having to delete the cache and refresh the page each time. I’ve not experienced that with WP Super Cache.

      Did you take a look at HostGator’s suggested settings? That’s how I have mine set up. Hope this helps!

      Thanks for your comments Justin and I really appreciate your visit. I hope you’ll come back again soon.

      Tim

      • http://www.seojus.com Justin Musiker

        Hi Tim,

        I use HostMonster (big mistake). All my other sites are with HGator, just not my SEO Site..ughhhh…..not happy..

        I assume those settings are universal, and it seems like its set up correctly. There is just something holding my site up..i believe it is the query strings for the WP database…I think I just need to switch Hosts. Thanks for the HGator link Tim…

        • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

          Hey Justin

          I’ve not really heard much about HostMonster in a long time. I take it things haven’t gone well with them?

          Do you mean the settings advised by HostGator? I would think they are universal.

          I just checked out your site and it’s looking great :-). I see what you mean about some of the pages taking a while to load though.

          Have you tried running your site through Pingdom Tools or GTMetrix to see if you can find out why?

          I just ran it through Pingdom and it does appear to be taking a few seconds to connect to the WP database along with time to load the javascript you have on the site.

          • http://www.seojus.com Justin Musiker

            Hey Tim,

            Totally did not realize you replied.The settings I meant were the ones from HostGator that you referenced, they pretty much apply to most Hosts, they are the best/optimal settings.

            Thanks for the compliment. I struggled for awhile picking a theme. I have done pretty much everything that one can do, besides remove query strings with ? at the end, and other css / coding stuff that I just can’t do. It seems to be loading ok for me, but that’s prob from cache. Could you possible try again, of course clearing cache and history. Thanks buddy..

          • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

            Hey Justin

            It was much quicker this time when I tried it. I cleared the cache and history first.

            Looking good I’d say :-).

  • http://www.wonderoftech.com Carolyn

    Hi Tim, I had that problem too, but my dear friend Ashvini suggested code for Alex to include in CommentLuv and that fixed my W3 Total Cache issue. I am very fortunate because Ashvini set up W3 Total Cache for me with my theme.

    I find that the plugin works great now. In fact, I can tell when I don’t have it active because my website is so much slower without it. I haven’t tried the ping test though.

    I’m glad you found an alternative that worked well for you, Tim!

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Carolyn

      Ashvini sounds like a good person to know! I’m glad you got your blog sorted out without having to remove W3 Total Cache.

      WP Super Cache has certainly been more stable for me with CommentLuv and I’m glad that Andy Bailey suggested it!

      It does seem to be a little hit and miss with any of the caching plugins; especially in their compatibility with other plugins.

  • Shorya Bist

    Hi Tim,
    I came to your blog from Mary’s blog when i read about “W3 super cache ” .It troubled me alot also on my blog. 1 month back i have installed it and i thought it will improve my loading time but for my suprise it created a lot many problems like it started changing inner functioning of codes and started problems with my adsense codes , it corrupted many plugins including (comluv).I was not able to share my links in social sites.
    I finally removed it some days back and every thing is working fine now.I was really pissed of by this plugin.Now i am scared to try any other plugin because already w3 created alot of problems.But as you said wp super cache with Andy Bailey recommendation i thinking to try it.
    What you think let me know more about this plugin because i am really scared to try new one you can understand that.

    Thank You
    Shorya Bist
    From Youthofest

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Shorya

      Thank you for visiting my blog and thank you to Mary that you discovered it via her blog :-).

      I had a number of problems when using W3 Total Cache, particularly with CommentLuv and the nRelate plugins.

      When I had the issues with CommentLuv I contacted Andy Bailey, the chap behind CommentLuv, and he suggested WP Super Cache as he uses that caching plugin himself.

      I didn’t try WP Super Cache for some time after I had the problems with W3 Total Cache. Like you, I was worried about more problems happening if I installed another caching plugin.

      WP Super Cache is the one also recommended by my web host, Hostgator, and you can check out their recommended settings here.

      All I can do is suggest that you try it and if it causes any problems remove it straight away. I’ve not had any issues with it so far and that includes when I’ve updated plugins.

      Let me know how you get on. I wish you the best of luck. If you’re still having problems, hopefully we can find someone who will be able to help.

      Thank you for your comments Shorya and I hope to see you again soon.

      Tim

  • http://custom-writing.org/blog/author/jane Jack Milgram

    I haven’t dealt with cache plugins before. Thanks for your support in our struggle for a better site load time. I always rely on your experience and kind advice and I am happy that I foud out your blog on the web.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      I’m still not completely happy with the load time of my blog Jack so there has to be more I can do, right?

      If I find anything, I’ll be sure to write about it and let you know :-).

  • http://www.beinghealthylifestyle.com/ Rajani

    Hi Tim
    I’ve noticed this problem too. It’s particularly annoying for those of us without a plethora of mobile devices to test on, and it’s way too complex for novices to get right first go. It would be great if this could be made to work correctly out of the box when W3 Total Cache and WP Touch are used together.
    Thanks for share it.

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Rajani

      Thank you for visiting my blog. It’s really great to see you.

      I found W3 Total Cache an absolute nightmare to understand. It didn’t work out of the box and there were too many options for me to get to grips with.

      Have you tried WP Super Cache with WP Touch? I don’t use WP Touch so I’m not sure but you could try it.

      I hope you find a solution Rajani!

      Have a great weekend.

      Tim

  • http://HairMineralAnalysisReview.com/blog Joy Healey

    Hi Tim, That’s a really helpful and interesting post. I am having speed issues with one blog and format issues with another. One used W3TC and the other SP Super Cache. So I’m trying WP Super Cache on one and Quick Cache on another.

    Of particular interest to me were the comments not to bother with one at all! I’ve certainly not seen any improvement when using them. Will try that next.

    I read on Pauline Bennet’s blog about P3 plugin to monitor plugin performance, And when I installed it I found that JetPack was caning my blog’s performance!

    Joy

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi Joy

      I’ve seen a little bit of improvement in the loading speed of my blog since I moved to WP Super Cache.

      It’s also been much more stable and is keeping the CPU usage at HostGator to a minimum too which in turn keeps them happy :-).

      I know quite a few people now who are seeing some performance issues when using JetPack.

      I’ve had to disable certain parts of it because it didn’t work correctly with my theme. I need to check on the performance though with P3 as I haven’t done it for a while.

  • http://payperclickspecialist.net Pay-per-click specialist

    Thanks for the post. I have been experiencing problems with certain plugins as well on my blog. I had an issue when I removed redirection, a 301 redirect plugin, and I had uses with Optin Skin that I am certain was attributed to w3 Total cache. Although I love the plugin, but it can be a pain at times.

    Happy blogging :)

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hi there

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      I removed the Redirection plugin from my blog a while ago because I too was experiencing some issues with it.

      W3 Total Cache also just didn’t play nicely with my blog and made my theme revert to the default settings every few days.

      I think if there were an idiot’s guide to W3 Total Cache it would be useful. For now though, I’m very happy with WP Super Cache.

  • http://www.shadowsgalore.com Puru

    I have a blog on which I upgraded the theme and the latest version of W3 Total Cache at the same time (yes I was being silly). I have found that the load time of my site went up from 1-2 Sec to 5-11 Sec. Now am try to find out what caused the slowdown. Unfortunately I have two variables, the theme as well the the cache plugin. Coming weekend will be a long one :(

    • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

      Hey Puru

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      That’s interesting that adding W3 Total Cache made your site’s load time increase.

      I had heard that that can happen but you’re right. With adding a new theme at the same time, you can’t be sure that it wasn’t that which made the load speed increase.

      I hope you get it sorted and find out the culprit. You’ll need to come back and let me know!

      Have a great week.

      Tim