I discovered that my site's performance is not really improved with W3 Total Cache installed. If anything it seems a bit slower.
(I have an enterprise hosting plan for an online arts magazine which presently has about 250 posts and 25K visitors/month.)
I've never used a caching plugin before and confess I don't really understand how all the options work. My webhost instructed me to install this particular plugin.
In my webhost's knowledgebase, it says to use these settings:
"You will want to turn on the following caching:
Page Cache: Enable (Method: Disk: Basic)
Database Cache: Enable (Method: Disk)
Object Cache: Enable (Method: Disk)
Browser Cache: Enable"
So, that's what I did. But since it didn't speed up my site, I asked them what I could do and got this reply.
"1. W3 cache is OK for static page cache but NEVER use the disk based object/database cache.
2. Enable the static css file mode by adding define( 'LESS_FILE_MODE', true );
to wp-config.php for increasing the response time."
They also said to "contact the plugin developer" if I have more questions. Helpful, huh?
So, now I'm doubly confused:
1. They're saying (I think) to NEVER use the disk object/database cache, even though that's what the knowledgebase says TO do. And if I don't use the "disk" setting, what do I use instead? There are so many other options and I don't know what they all do.
2. They're asking to modify a non-theme file. I have never touched anything other than the theme CSS so am freaked about modifying anything when I don't even understand why I'm doing it. What does "( 'LESS_FILE_MODE', true );" do, and how will it impact my site's functioning?
Really appreciate any advice you can give me!