We often get asked “My profiler plugin shows that EasyRecipe accounts for most of the CPU elapsed time. Does that mean EasyRecipe is making my site slow?”
It’s true. EasyRecipe is a CPU hog!
Every plugin you install will add to your page load time. The good news is that EasyRecipe is almost certainly not making your blog significantly slower.
A page’s CPU time (the time spent on your server just figuring out what to display) usually accounts for only a fraction of total page load time – normally you’d expect it to take less than a second. So even though EasyRecipe is taking up most of the CPU time, it’s still taking just fractions of a second.
Every blog will be different but as a rough guide, you should expect EasyRecipe to add around 250ms (about ¼ of a of a second) to your page load times. Ironically, most of that ¼ second is spent looking up the database, not CPU usage.
You can try it yourself on a page speed test site, or get real times by using the development tools in your browser to monitor actual download times. (or Firebug in Firefox).
The best test site we’ve seen is http://www.webpagetest.org/
Try running a test on a page that contains an EasyRecipe and then de-activate EasyRecipe and re-run the test. You should probably run a couple of tests on each because there are all sorts of external factors that can influence page load times and running a couple of tests will give you a better indication of what’s “normal”.
To test the influence of EasyRecipe, you should turn off any caching. To test how quickly your viewers will see your pages, leave the caching on.
In the vast majority of cases we’ve seen, slow page load times are simply caused by “too much stuff” and/or huge image file sizes.