Now that the WordPress 2.8.1 is released, as promised, I have tested this latest version. But I didn’t want to show the same data again, so this time I will test WP 2.8.1 against WP 2.8. Also, for some of not so relevant data I will not use charts. This post will show data from testing both WP administration and actual blog pages.

But, before you go on, here is the reminder of previous posts:

Administration memory usage

Administration memory usage

Administration

First batch of tests will focus on WP administration pages. I used the same setup for these tests, and comparison between two versions of WP are on this first chart. As you can see, dashboard page now uses some 5MB less memory in both clean version and with all plugins active. Main reason for this is because feeds are now loading data through AJAX only if they are needed.

Pages are now prepared by PHP much faster, and this is noticeable on, more or less, all administration pages. Generated pages sizes are mostly the same size as with WP 2.8, with few exceptions where the generated page is much smaller, like with the dashboard, because feeds are now not a part of the page. Same speedup is visible on general settings page, and now time zone settings are loading very fast.

As you can see not all pages show memory decreasing, but that is to be expected, not all parts of WP 2.8 were problem, only some of the pages needed to be fixed. But as I said, many of the improvements are visible all over the administration. For the past few days I have been using 2.8.1 on my blogs, and I am very pleased with latest changes.

It’s important to mention, that this time I had no problems with auto upgrade as I had with updating from 2.7.1 to 2.8, so that’s also a big plus for 2.8.1

Blog Pages

The other part of the test is testing of actual blog pages. Again, many things depend on the theme you use and on the loading optimizations theme might (or not) use. As I said before, very few themes right now are improved in that direction. So, I decided for this WP 2.8 against WP 2.8.1 tests to focus on default theme and number of queries executed.

Number of queries on blog pages

Number of queries on blog pages

As for the other tests like size of the page and used memory, there is almost no difference between two versions. But, as I said in first post on the subject, WP 2.8 is already excellent as the blog pages goes.

But in most cases, WP 2.8.1 needs less queries then WP 2.8. I am not sure exactly what is done to cause this improvement, and I really don’t care, as long as WP 2.8.1 is better. And less queries it takes, means that less resources will WP use, and server will be able to serve content to more visitors in the same time.

Last week I have published similar tests for WP 2.8 and my GD Star Rating plugin, and you can see in that post how much SQL queries will that plugin add to the blog. Tests are done to show the value of cache and prefetch methods I developed into the plugin to minimize the queries.

Conclusion

Now that we have WP 2.8.1 released, there is no more reasons for you to wait with upgrading your blog(s). WP 2.8.x uses more resources then previous versions, but that is, in my opinion, good trade off for much better interface, much easier to use panels for posts and comments, better dashboard, better user interaction and most important faster blog pages that your visitors see. If WP 2.8 was problematic in terms of using too much memory, WP 2.8.1 solved all that problems and even improved in some areas. Overall, this is the best release of WP yet, and a good sign that next versions will be, as expected, even better.

I hope that I will be able to complete (soon) testing of JavaScript performance and testing of some of the plugins to complete the series of benchmark posts trying to give you a better look at WP performance.


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