WARNING! BORING TECHNICAL ENTRY AHEAD!!
Thanks to a comment from Patrick I've implemented gzip compression on all the pages served up here at Blogography. I pretty much had no choice, because my bandwidth is rapidly approaching quota for the month (again), and I'm running out of tricks. I've tested random pages on various browsers and everything seems to work okay. Though I suppose if it isn't working for you, I'll never know, because you won't be able to read this to know what's happening.
Remarkably, this actually seems to be having an effect. In just 14 hours, my bandwidth usage has dropped by about 16%, and pages are served slightly faster. Sweet! I had no idea that HTML contributed so much to the problem, and was always blaming everything on the abundance of images I use. If you are curious to know if your pages are compressed, or how much bandwidth you could save if they are not, there's a nifty online tool to check your domain.
Another change, thanks to monitoring my logs with the ridiculously clever Mint, is that I've repaired hundreds of broken links I didn't even know I had! When I changed the way my entry archives are named about 7 months ago, I thought that search engines would eventually figure out they shouldn't be linking to the old ones. I was wrong. Google has regularly been sending people here using busted links from over a half-year ago. Isn't Google supposed to be smarter than this?
Anyway, I created a very simple template in Movable Type to generate a list that maps old busted links to new fresh links, and then just copied all 1000 lines of permanent redirects to my "htaccess" file. Simple. Problem solved.
This weeks list of interesting search engine referrals...
Looking over that list, I think that it makes this blog sound a heck of a lot more exciting than it actually is.
UPDATE: Spent the past hour adjusting more little things that were bothering me... all by manually modifying the SQL database. If you know how SQL works, it's a very powerful way to make bulk changes in minutes that would have taken hours by hand, but is scary, scary stuff if you make a mistake. At a couple of points I thought for sure I would have to restore from backup, but always managed to dig myself out again.
I love comments! However, all comments are moderated, and won't appear until approved. Are you an abusive troll with nothing to contribute? Don't bother. Selling something? Don't bother. Spam linking? Don't bother.
I, for one, wandered over here while doing a Google image search for natto. Extra special lucky points for finding the most satisfyingly gross natto pic in a blog that’s both a) entertaining and insightful, and b) written by a fellow Mac Addict and small-town Washingtonian!
Well done, Dave… like I know anything about what you’re doing, heh. Old brain, no hope. But glad you can save bandwidth and $$. A few posts ago, you were bemoaning Six Apart and some screw ups, etc… do you ever read blurbomat? Husband of Dooce…. both Mac people and he’s in the biz… don’t know if you might find something helpful on his site, but he’s written (I think) about some of the things you mentioned. Sure, Salma Hayek, Blog Dave… both beautiful people, no? LOL, just joking around… have a good one!
Hey… I suggested this back in April when you were talking about bandwidth issues 😉
For Movable Type I put it in the first line of my mtview.php file (for my dynamic pages) so it does all my dynamic pages automagically.
I’m a slow learner. 🙂
I don’t use dynamic pages, and so it took me a while to figure out how to do it from within my htaccess file for straight HTML. I had given up along the way, but desperation finally necessitated giving it another try!
You and your misleading title… That wasn’t boring at all. Quite interesting, in fact! Should I ever have the glorious problem of needing more bandwidth, I’m sure I’ll appreciate this advice.
And thanks again for telling us about Mint – it’s FABOO!
Mint has quite literally changed everything for me. It’s so easy to monitor problems that pop up, that I actually have incentive to keep an eye out and fix them. Money well spent.