wordpress

Chicago Gang History III

WordPress Migration from Pantheon to K8s. Saved client hundreds per month in hosting charges as website hit 80K visitors per month.

:: Kubernetes / K3s / Helm / Redis / MariaDB / Ansible / WordPress / Route 53 / Sendinblue

Ported second generation Chicago Gang History website from Pantheon to a multi-node K3s cluster on Digital Ocean, saving Zach over $400 a month in fees after an unexpected price hike from his hosting provider.

Deadsimple Wordpress in Kubernetes

2 minute read Updated

A microtutorial to run WordPress locally in Kubernetes under Docker.
How to install Wordpress with Bravada theme for local development in 8 steps. Tip: If this tutorial is too high-level for you, have a look here instead. Step 1: Install Dependencies Lens Docker docker Git git Kubernetes CLI kubectl K3D k3d Helm helm Watch watch Step 2: Clone Sources Clone WordPress Helm Chart from OSA Clone WordPress from Pantheon Systems Put them next to each other.

Moving from Pantheon.io to Kubernetes

15 minute read Published

How to move a Pantheon WordPress site to K8s and save $400+ a month on hosting.

When I discovered Pantheon in early 2017 I thought I’d found an a hidden gem. The honeymoon ended when Pantheon hiked costs 40% (while taking away Redis) after about six months on their platform. That was a bummer, but not a deal breaker.

Fast-forward three years and Pantheon struck again. Only this time intead of instead of another 40% increase they went for the whole cookie jar with a jaw-dropping 1185.71% increase to $450 per month with a 10-day lead on the bill.

With little time to react to Pantheon’s change I did the most reasonable thing I could think of: let the site go down while I learned to move it to Kubernetes.

My requirements:

  • Get site back up-and-running with the least amount of effort
  • Eliminate visitor-based pricing imposed by hosting company
  • Use minimum possible resources to run WordPress at scale
  • Restore Redis cache Pantheon used to offer with $25 hosting

The rest of this post describes how I moved the Chicago Gang History WordPress website off Pantheon and onto Kubernetes. If you follow this guide, you can retrace my footsteps to migrate from Pantheon to Kubernetes too. At the outset you’ll have a 3-node WordPress cluster on Digital Ocean for $30 a month.

WordPress K3s — Init Containers and Helm

11 minute read Updated

How to create a hardened WordPress installation in Kubernetes using Init Containers and Helm on MacOS.

Last week Pantheon dealt the final blow to the website I drove from 100 visitors up to 80,000 per month. By the time I heard the death knell we had a 10-day advance notice the price of hosting was increasing 1025% to $450/month.

I quickly spun up a Plesk instance on Digital Ocean and installed WordPress on a $10/month VPS but realized Plesk was too bloated for our needs and probably not going to cut the mustard in the scale department should traffic decide to climb.

After initially attempting to deploy Wordpress using the Helm chart by Bitnami via the App Marketplace in Rancher 2.5 I found the chart difficult to use, kept looking and eventually found a an alternative chart on a self-hosted VCS.

Like the Bitnami chart the independent chart includes optional database set-up. Unlike the Bitnami chart, however, the self-hosted chart also includes a Redis object cache, OpenID Connect authentication. It also builds a hardened WordPress Pod using WP CLI from scratch with Ansible inside an Init Container. And in this tutorial I’m going to show you how you install it on macOS with K3D.

Putting WordPress into Hyperdrive

2 minute read Updated

Prepare for Ludicrous Speed with a 300% improvement in page load time.

After giving a talk at WordCamp Ubud 2017 – where I showed how to use a $5 Vultr box and Redis with Load Impact to support up to 7000 concurrent WordPress users – I was asked to help turn some of the performance optimization work demoed into a WordPress plug-in.

It’s the first of it’s kind — and like no other performance plugin to precede it. Based on initial tests it speeds up the stock Twenty Seventeen theme about 300% and I suspect time will show even greater gains for other themes. It builds on top of a performance optimization technique called Fetch Injection, enabling external scripts to download asynchronously in parallel while preserving execution order.

Hyperdrive

Increase the speed of WordPress 300% or more with one plug-in.

:: Fetch Inject / PHP / WordPress / Kahlan / Patchwork / Composer / Packagist

hyperdrive logo

Hyperdrive is a WordPress plugin wrapping Fetch Inject library to increase site performance using modern Web standards. Based on initial testing Hyperdrive was shown to reduce perceived latency in WordPress by 200-300%.

Chicago Gang History

Jekyll migration to WordPress, premium hosting, custom relational database, newsletter, contact form and AdSense integration.

:: WordPress / Pantheon / Route 53 / CloudFront

After 7-8 months the Jekyll version of Chicago Gang History we started seeing some scaling issues with media assets on CloudCannon. Rather than hacking it I instead worked with CGH author Zach Jones to perform a complete site redesign, leveraging existing ad revenue to migrate them to WordPress self-hosting.

The redesign was very successful and inbound search traffic continued to lift. A year following the redesign homepage hits are now greater than 70K per month.

website homepage

Drupal 7 for WordPress Admins

7 minute read Updated

WordPress continues to become more and more sophisticated as time draws on, with a constantly improving admin dashboard and easy-to-use plugin architecture. And themes like  Twenty Eleven give both bloggers and web developers something to appreciate. But while WordPress is a great CMS for personal blogs, it’s not well suited for more complex applications such as Drupal, on the other hand, and by design, excels at all of the above and more.

his article will look at some of the similarities and differences between WordPress and Drupal 7, explain how to accomplish some of the less intuitive administration procedures in Drupal, share some newbie gotchas and timesavers, and provide a list of modules useful to get a new Drupal site off the ground. It is assumed readers are new to Drupal but have a familiarity with using the WordPress blogging platform.