4 Core Techniques to Troubleshoot Drupal Performance Disasters

Disasters can run down your Drupal site’s performance at any point in time! You may want to keep such performance obstructers at bay, and for that you will need to work real hard on how you tame the website. Hardware failure, reduced traffic, coding errors, downtime for a longer while etc. are all possible causes for performance issues.

You can’t sit around and wait for your website to be attacked, and insist on coming up with a strike back at that hour. You need to keep your plans handy. Troubleshooting techniques should be strategized, for every issue that your site can possibly confront. This way you would be ready for all the possible disasters.

Precaution Against Attacks
You will need to work on preventive methods, so that your website is least likely to face the intensity of disasters. There are a few things that you can perform to ensure you are protected in the face of disasters.

Caching the Site
With a properly cached Drupal site, you are protected against the most likely calamities like downtime, performance failures, and reduced traffic. Regular caching of the website will help maintain the website.

Increase PHP Memory Limits
The default memory in php.ini is pretty low, and the number is dependent on various server related factors. If the size of your Drupal site as well as the server resources demands an increase, you should ideally strive to increase the limits. This way the performance won’t be hindered.

Regular Backups
If you want to maintain the performance, regular backup is a must for your website. It is pretty reliable, and can be automated.

First Steps of Troubleshooting
If you find some performance issues in your site, this is what you will first consort to. You will primarily delve into troubleshooting, and this is what you need to initially prefer.

You should have a log of how many times, and during what hours of the day, your Drupal site took a beating in terms of performance. This log should be live and real time. This would help you go to the roots of the issue.

Lay Down Logging Tools
Create log entries of your site’s performance downtime. You will need to establish a log sharing and storage tool for this purpose on the server. Choose a tool that will grant you real time information for best results.

Study the Situation
You will need to study the situation before you call out for action. You will need to study the hours of adversity, along with the hours before and after the adversity hit the website. This would help you get a complete understanding of how it stands. You will need to get the logs on application, as well as database levels for in-depth study.

Advanced Troubleshooting Techniques

Simulate the Adversity
You need to recreate the issue using a simulator tool. Keep the environment and other dimensions similar to the real one, and try to run the issue. You have tools like Selenium as well as ABC Load Tester to work on testing the adversity in simulation environment

Logging with Precision
You may have experienced the pros of logging. Now, get started with some precision logging systems so that you have an accurate data in hand. This would help you land into the pool of solution.

Reviewing the Data
Integrate your website with New Relic, a SaaS based application. This will offer you an in-depth insight on the performance issues raised by your website. The charts provided will give you a glimpse on all the possible reasons for the different adversities you have called out. You will get to see what was happening at all stages and phases of interaction, when your website was experiencing adversity. This would help take relevant actions.

Test the Different Solutions
While you are troubleshooting the whole adversity, it is important to carry on with the different solutions that you might like to put to use for solving this matter. Keep testing the different solutions at different times. You might hit a temporary solution, which can benefit your site for the time being. You can utilize this situation, till you find a way to throw out the adversity completely.

Keep an Eye on the Obstructions

Full Stack Control Dependency
When troubleshooting, or offering solutions, you may need control on the full stack of the website. While you have possible control on certain aspects, there are some components for which you are dependent on others. In case of no cooperation, you will be troubleshooting without gaining access to application or database or the webserver. You need to gain complete understanding of the picture in order to troubleshoot with perfection.

Coordination with Third Party Developers
If your website works in tandem with third party developers, who upload codes to your website, then it is necessary that they follow the best practices. But, what if they don’t? This might reduce the speed of the features that you have added, or increase the disasters and performance failures. Not following best practices could become an issue.

Deepa is a passionate blogger associated with Semaphore Software. She loves sharing information regarding drupal development services.

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