Article ZF: Caching Pages via Front Controller Plugin

Today I implemented caching using a front controller plugin (see Matthews post on Zend Devzone) into the Whitewashing blog software via Zend_Cache and the Filesystem Backend. I ran some superficial Apache Benchmark tests to have a look at the gain change in performance.

First of all i used the complete Plugin from Matthews article on Zend Devzone and a missing function getCache() in the code fragment:

public function getCache()
    if( ($response = $this->cache->load($this->key)) != false) {
        return $response;
    return false;

I loaded the Plugin into the front controller and initialized it with a Zend_Config_Ini object. This all works very smoothly and caching is ready to begin.

Testing came to the result that with 1000 requests, 10 of them concurrent (ab -n 1000 -c 10), which I know is a rather unrealistic assumption for this blog, the request time dropped by half, from six to three seconds (still lot of time, but this isn't the best webserver).

Requests per second:    1.49 [#/sec] (mean)
Time per request:       6695.213 [ms] (mean)

Connection Times (ms)
              min  mean[+/-sd] median   max
Connect:       26   30   4.0     30      43
Processing:  1556 6452 3372.1   5511   14768
Waiting:     1436 6129 3174.1   5145   14595
Total:       1583 6483 3373.2   5538   14810
Requests per second:    3.03 [#/sec] (mean)
Time per request:       3304.534 [ms] (mean)

Connection Times (ms)
              min  mean[+/-sd] median   max
Connect:       26   31   6.3     30      73
Processing:   781 3214 1757.7   3103    7445
Waiting:      650 3055 1731.4   2928    7190
Total:        809 3245 1757.8   3135    7475

As said before this testing is superficial, but its gives a broad sense of what performance gain is possible with just some lines of code and a temporary directory. Using memcache will probably speed up the process another good amount.

Later I realized that complete page caching (rather than block element caching) sucks when you inject admin area links into the navigation, which would allow non-logged in users to see parts of the admin area so I had to disable caching totally. You never know in the first place (you should though). I have to rework my admin area or extend my authentication or the caching plugin somehow. This will probably be the topic another time.

Published: 2008-06-22 Tags: #ZendFramework