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Resource limits frequently being met

Discussion in 'Workarounds and Optimization' started by M.K., May 27, 2016.

  1. M.K.

    M.K. Registered

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    Hello everyone,

    I'm new here and signed in in order to ask a question concerning an issue our website is facing.

    In the last month we have experienced our site slowing down somewhat. Simultaneously, cPanel has reported an increase in resource usage and occasional peaks. If you look at the attached image, you will see that a noticeable change took place in the average and peak usage at the April 20th mark. That is also when we started experiencing sluggishness in the site's UX.

    We are using a Wordpress site with shared hosting. There were no major changes done to the site at that period, nor has there been unusual amount of traffic coming to our site. The only thing that we did do around that time or a week earlier was to turn off automatic redirecting of users to their country's language version (we are running a multilingual site), due to the fact that this feature had been causing issues regarding the findability of certain pages on Google. Other than that there haven't been any new plugins installed or other major additions done.

    Our hosting provider recommended an upgrade that we then made after a week of experiencing these issues. After the upgrade we have the following resource limits at our disposal:

    > 25% 4 vCPU

    > 8192M MEM virtual

    > 2048M MEM physical

    > 80 EP

    > 4096 kbps IO

    This upgrade did nothing to alleviate our issues however as we were and still are experiencing peak hits in our physical memory, entry processes as well as CPU. When asked about this, our provider recommended dedicated hosting and was reluctant to offer any other solutions. They then did tell me over the phone that I should check out if there are some plugins that are causing problems and also check the size of images. Our images had been optimized a month before with the help of a special plugin, and even before that was done the site was running ok, so I didn't suspect that to be the primary cause. What I then did was to update all the plugins, installed P3 Plugin Profiler and turned off some unnecessary ones. This did help somewhat in terms of site speed, even though some of main culprits identified by the plugin profiler were plugins that were necessary for running and updating the site smoothly, such as Sitepress Multilingual CMS and WPML String Translation as well as Advanced Custom Fields. Those things have been with us since the very beginning of our Wordpress site.

    But even as the site's speed had visibly improved, we still hit resource limits almost every day, and usually in the evening or at night. I then looked up what else could be causing these things. Somewhere I read that Wordpress sites frequently come under brute force attacks and checked the log of our security plugin, which I nor anyone else had admittedly paid any great attention to in the past. It showed that there had been multiple login attempts from suspicious sources every day, almost every hour during the last month (the log didn't extend beyond that, so I can't tell how it looked before April 20th, for instance). There had been no breach, however, and the IPs where the attempts came from were always locked out at and eventually banned. I then tightened the security measures so that a lockout would occur earlier and last longer and banning would take place earlier as well. So far the attacks have at least become less frequent, but those resource limits still keep getting hit (see the attached report from the last 24 hours), so that has made me wonder about the relationship between these two things or whether there is something more that could be done.

    Are there any other things that could be done, either something to improve upon the aforementioned measures or something else entirely?
     

    Attached Files:

  2. tank

    tank Well-Known Member

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    M.K.

    I know exactly what you are talking about. I have worked with the exact plugins you have mentioned. Those plugins query the database heavily and often times use alot of RAM. Without knowing your hosts configurations for how it handled MySQL databases and PHP requests, it is very hard to "fix" your site on your end. My only suggestion is to run a some sort of Cacheing plugin on your wordpress site. This will help reduce the amount of processing of PHP.

    The other side of all of this is..... you get what you pay for. I don't know that exact details of your hosting. You are on a shared environment and you are honestly getting alot of resources. May I ask what hosting company you are using? Would you consider switching to a different company? I can recommend a few, I have sent some of my clients to that often times need more RAM and or CPU.
     
  3. M.K.

    M.K. Registered

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    Hello tank,

    thanks for your feedback. We do have one of the best caching plugins out there for Wordpress, W3 Total Cache, and so far it has worked fine.

    I don't know about switching to another company, although recommendations are welcome. It seems that these problems have started to occur relatively out of the blue without a clearly identifiable cause, such as increase in traffic, major expansions of the site etc. As I said, our site has been running those plugins since day one, so I wonder if they are really the nr. 1 cause of the problems.
    If we cannot identify any cause for these things on our side, then I guess the next step would be to move to dedicated hosting.
    Somehow I still have the feeling though (and I hope it's the case) that there's something here that can be fixed without a major resource update, and I would be very grateful for any possible suggestions.

    Attached is another resource usage report of the last 24 hours. It seems that the problem is getting even worse, and what puzzles me is that those limits keep getting hit even in the night (and in fact mostly in the night) when there is otherwise little traffic.
     

    Attached Files:

    #3 M.K., May 30, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: May 30, 2016
  4. Infopro

    Infopro cPanel Sr. Product Evangelist
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    You were running out of date plugins on a wordpress site (is the WP site up to date?). You updated some but not all the plugins, and a few others you disabled but did not remove.

    Out of date, useless plugins and their files should be completely removed from your server not just turned off. Old plugins you need but can't update for some reason, should be replaced or given up on, and removed as well.

    You should worry more about the resources and security issues than keeping old plugins going. Starting with disabling all addons and plugins and see if the resources issue gets any better. Enable one of the up to date plugins and watch resources. Enable a second up to date plugin, and watch resources. And watch your logs.

    Your site is probably being attacked and that's whats using up resources if I was to guess. Changing Hosting Providers isn't going to help, IMHO.

    Tips for making Wordpress more secure:
    Hardening WordPress « WordPress Codex

    That's a long article, and the most important Info is way down the page, but the entire article is well worth the read.

    Your thread here doesn't read like a cPanel issue, it's more of a wordpress issue and the experts for wordpress are on the wordpress support forums.
     
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