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W3 Total Cache

Easy Web Performance Optimization (WPO) using caching: browser, page, object, database, minify and content delivery network support.

178920

197 reviews
Average Rating
4.4 out of 5 stars
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Install/uninstall errors, obnoxious ads
By , for WP 3.9.2

Though this is an obviously technically complex plugin that's trying to do a lot, I found that it was designed in a scatterbrained fashion, with many settings in no particular order. I'd suggest some professional QA and a hierarchical set of menus that offer a simple but effective implementation for beginners, and a get-out-of-my-way interface with plenty of control for experts.

On install, I got messages asking for various missing files. On updating WordPress, I again received messages asking for missing files, or for me to delete other files. When another plugin misbehaved, I had trouble fixing the problem because W3TC had cached a corrupt file, but dashboard was down. Normally, I'd just FTP the file but once it's cached...

On deactivate, I had another missing file, had to FTP changes to get the thing out of my system.

I have to say that there was a substantial speed increase, once I messed with it for a few hours.

On update, it obnoxiously and unmercifully bothered me until I agreed to tweet or friend the CEO! I mean, every time I clicked on something! Then when I added it's link to footer (No problem, BTW. I'll support you while I try your software, but try to be less obnoxious about it next time.) Unfortunately, the link W3TC added to my page was an obnoxious colour and not in the area for links in the footer. No, that's not good enough for W3TC. God forbid someone should be allowed to change the link colour to fit their theme! Oh, no, W3TC has to add it in a roundabout way so you can't change it! Annoying.

The last straw was that on doing some research, I found out that W3TC has some functions that overlap with CloudFlare. One can simply dump W3TC and get as much improvement, at least in my case, by enabling the Cloudflare functions that don't play well with W3TC. I did that, and ended up with 90% of the speed, without the errors, missing files, overhead, and obnoxiousness.

Goodbye W3TC! Call me when your interface is ready, you've caught some bugs, and you've toned down the obnoxiousness.

Cloudflare Pro Issues
By , for WP 3.9.2

So I tried using this today for the first time with a domain thats linked to Cloudflare Pro and I could not get the W3 Total Cache to connect with Cloudflare after about 2 hours of trying different things I gave up. I was using WP Super Cache before and had no issues. I found that with W3 all my speed test cam back with same score as it did with super cache that was connetcd to Cloudflare would of been awesome to see the score W3 would of given me if it had connected to cloudflare. I have now removed W3 Total cache and loaded Super Cache and alls working fine with again CloudFlare. W3 Total works perfectly on my other sites and has improved the speed and score on gtmetrix but sadly couldn't not get it to connect with my own domain and link with Cloudflare Pro. I will be using W3 again just not for cloudflare pro accounts.

Killed the goose, no more eggs
By , for WP 4.0

UPDATE: A 2* downgrade due to the lack of updates and a fair degree of unpredictability in what functionality works on a given day. A further -2* for the sheer obnoxiousness of the pop-ups. Limit your plugin to 30 days, consult, write other software, get unemployment, I don't care: this is the worst side of WP I've seen. A disgrace to the platform.

In summary, it was nice to play around with for a while, but you'll be giving yourself an unnecessary headache installing this on a proper client's site. Let the web server and its extensions do the job they were designed for in terms of caching.

It's a nice plugin that does what it says. It's also fairly well-written, so it's easy to understand what it's doing even if you're not that familiar with WP.

One major downside is the lack of documentation. The big FAQ is nice, but for a fairly complex bit of software like that, each option should be documented.

Hence 4/5.

Internal Server Error
By , for WP 3.9.1

Everytime I use this plug in I get an Internal Server Error after saving even when I just activate one caching method

Blegh
By , for WP 3.9.1

What a terrible plugin!! Installation is too difficult with weird API keys.. They don't even work!!!!

And why the *** should they have my phone number?

Login issues
By , for WP 3.9.1

Login issues and new posts not appear

Broke my site
By , for WP 3.9

I was running this plugin for several months and the speed was improved for maybe the first few weeks and then the site crawled again, gradually slower and slower over the course of time. Today, certain aspects of the site wouldn't load. The edit posts, edit pages and edit plugins interfaces wouldn't load from the dashboard at all. Also, the blog wouldn't load on the front end either. After I deleted this plugin's directory and all it's files outside the directory MANUALLY via ftp (because it broke the plugins page in the admin panel) my site worked again.

Granted, I did nothing with the plugin after i installed it and just went with all the defaults, so if there was some sort of action i needed to have take to avoid the crash (like cache clearing or whatever) I didn't do it-- or even know about it. If there was some action or maintenance needed in the plugin, there should have been some sort of notification. A plugin should not completely break your site.

Too many problems with minify and pop-ups
By , for WP 3.9.1

I did not saw speed improvements in my blog, also minify option messed up with the content. Advertising is annoying.

Nag screen to vote
By ,

Displays an annoying nag screen asking to vote and follow every time you look at the settings!

broken is broken
By , for WP 3.9.1

Seems to me the author has given up with this plugin. It has not worked for the last couple of months and there has been no update.

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