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      How To Optimize a WordPress Installation Before Troubleshooting



      Part of the Series:
      Common WordPress Errors

      This tutorial series explains how to troubleshoot and fix common errors that you may encounter when deploying, maintaining, and updating your WordPress installation.

      Each tutorial in this series includes descriptions of common deployment, maintenance, or update errors, and explores ways to fix and optimize your installation to scale.

      Introduction

      WordPress is a robust Content Management System (CMS) that provides blog and site infrastructure, creation, and publishing tools. While WordPress is a well-maintained, open source CMS, you may sometimes encounter issues or errors that will prevent you from having access to common functionalities.

      In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to perform steps to ward against common WordPress errors in a way that also optimizes your site to prevent those errors from occurring in the future.

      Step 1 — Creating a Backup of Your Site

      Before you begin any troubleshooting process, it’s wise to back up your site. Creating backups of your site, whether manually or by using a plugin, allows you to restore your WordPress installation in the event of an error. A backup also serves to protect your WordPress site against security threats, data loss, and more.

      Learn How To Back Up Your WordPress Site to Object Storage with our tutorial, or explore WordPress Backup Plugins to automate the backup process.

      Step 2 — Making Sure your Cache is Clear

      A cache is a temporary storage space that allows browsers and programs to take a snapshot of your site and store temporary files and data, to load your site faster and increase performance.

      While caching does generally give a performance boost to site load times and improves user experience, sometimes errors with visual elements may be a result of a cached version of your site being served. Clearing your browser cache as well as your WordPress cache typically solves issues with older or cached versions of your site being shown.

      This list shares step-by-step information to clear your browser cache on any browser, and there are a number of site caching plugins available that allow you to clear and maintain WordPress cache size, in order to optimize your site’s appearance and performance.

      Step 3 — Auditing Your Plugins

      Plugins are third-party software added to WordPress installations to extend functionality. Even though these extensions provide helpful and convenient features, they can sometimes conflict with each other and cause your site to experience issues in performance, speed, and security.

      To audit your plugins and potentially troubleshoot an error, start by ensuring that each of your plugins are updated to its most recent version. Next, you can also deactivate all plugins and reactivate them one-by-one.

      While inside of your WordPress site’s admin panel, click Plugins, then All Plugins. Within your list of plugins, click the box to Select All, then click Deactivate from the dropdown above the checkbox. Click Apply to deactivate all plugins.Then, select one plugin at a time and click Activate to reactivate each of them while monitoring your website to identify any issues .

      Conclusion

      This tutorial highlighted three steps that you can take to prevent your WordPress site from experiencing common errors, and to maintain the health of your WordPress installation.

      For more information on optimizing your WordPress installation on Ubuntu, visit our tutorial, How to Optimize WordPress on Ubuntu 20.04.



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