Determine server response time (TTFB) in TYPO3

Server response time or TTFB

The Pagespeed-Optimization is an important prerequisite for a good user experience and thus also a good ranking in search engines (both are demonstrably related). Often, when analyzing load times, one comes across the so-called server response time(technical term: TTFB = Time To First Byte). This means the time that the web server needs to deliver the requested resource (e.g. HTML page, images, external CSS or JavaScript files, etc.) (measured at the first byte that comes back).

 

A frequently critical point is the creation of the HTML page by TYPO3. For the delivery of other files (web fonts, images, downloads, CSS, etc.) from the server, TYPO3 is usually not needed. I.e. in these cases the bottleneck is rather to be looked for with the provider.

A very high TTFB value in the HTML file therefore indicates optimization potential in TYPO3..

Measurement of the TTFB value with Chrome

The Chrome browser is a great way to illustrate the problem. You can perform a network analysis for a single web page with F12. If you compare the Time and Size columns of the loaded resources, you will notice that the loaded HTML page (at least when using a content management system) has a relatively high TTFB value. This is due to the fact that the page has to be generated dynamically by TYPO3 (among other things by database queries) - i.e. when it is called up:

 

With 1.86 seconds, the HTML file in the example above is the resource with the longest loading time. This is mainly due to the TTFB value.

 

Measuring the TTFB value with the TYPO3 Admin Panel

With the TYPO3 Admin-Panel you can determine the local load time of a single page even better. To activate the admin panel you have to insert the following variable in your TYPOSCRIPT setup:

 

config.admPanel = 1

 

Once activated, the admin panel is displayed to the administrator - if logged in to the backend - at the bottom of the screen when the frontend page is accessed.

In the following video we show how to use the admin panel under TYPO3 to determine the load time of a page:

The following should be noted when using this method:

  • the admin panel determines how much time TYPO3 needs to create the page. From this point of view it is not really the TTFB, because the communication overhead by the server (e.g. the time for establishing the connection, the so called handshaking) is not considered.
  • creating cached pages is much faster (as also seen in the video), as much less database queries & processing time are required.
  • with the admin panel you can do further analysis like the single database calls. However, this sometimes requires very profound TYPO3 know-how.
  • there are no real reference values how high the loading time of a page should be. But a cached page (default case) should not take longer than 0.5 seconds.

For more information on how to improve the pagespeed of a TYPO3 website, click here.