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chrisredco
VP-ASP Super User

282 Posts

Posted - July 20 2011 :  13:42:41  Show Profile  Visit chrisredco's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Just got this in an email from COMODO, the company I bought my SSL certificate from. Is there any credence to such a claim and should I be concerned since most of my customers are in the USA and my hosting compny is not?

Why do some Web sites take longer to come up than others?

To reach any Web site, every customer on earth sends his Go To request to a regional Domain Name System Server. Better known as a DNS Server. This is a free service for all customers and Web sites.


But with Free DNS, the farther away the site's company is from the customer, the longer it takes for the site to come up. Because the company's regional server is as far away as the company's.


For instance, a man in Tokyo who
wants to buy a tie from a merchant in New York, could wait up to 14 seconds for the tie store's site to come up! And Forrester discovered that 2 out of every 5 shoppers DON'T WAIT! Instead, they start shopping elsewhere. By SECOND 4.


For ecommerce sites, this is terrifying! Because it means you could be missing out on 40% of your paying customer base, simply because they're trying to reach you from too far away. But there is a solution.


Thanks,
Chris

Redco Audio
www.redco.com

devshb
Senior Member

United Kingdom
1898 Posts

Posted - July 20 2011 :  13:53:59  Show Profile  Visit devshb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
sounds like some kind of scam to me; maybe they're trying to sell something that nobody needs, or they're trying to provide an excuse for their own servers stalling.

Resolving the dns should be pretty much instant, no matter where the person or the site is. I think it is local (eg if a site changes its dns records, then the dns for me will resolve at a different time to someone in the usa), but that locality issue shouldn't be a problem once a domain's dns has settled-down a few days after you've changed it.

finding the server's ip for a given domain name should never take 14 seconds, it should be so quick that you wouldn't even notice it.
What might take a tiny bit of extra time is sending back the html from the server to the browser, but with the structure of the internet the way that it is, even that shouldn't make a noticeable difference.
The only real problem time-wise when it comes to loading would be the time it takes for the server to process the asp that has been requested, or, if the server hosting the site is stalling because it's overloaded.

It sounds to me like either comodo's servers are stalling, or the site hosting the shop is stalling, but neither aspect should really be relevant to the physical location of the person browsing the site.

Maybe if you owned google or amazon then the location might be an issue, but otherwise I don't think it'd make much difference.

Even if you hosted your site from the same server as customer x, and registered the dns in the same country, what happens if customer y is in a different country? It'd take longer for customer y to get the html that the server processed than it would to resolve the dns.

I've seen comodo "certified" logos/js make entire sites completely stall, because the comodo servers are simply dead in the water a lot of the time; we almost always end up taking the "certified by comodo" stuff out of the header/trailer because it just makes the site die most of the time.

Our bigyellowkey.com site is hosted in the usa, but the speed at which I get the pages really isn't changed by my location; if the site/server's not heavily loaded then the pages load instantly even though I'm in the uk, and if the site/server is fairly busy then it'll take about 3 or 4 seconds.

The loading of the hosting server and the shop's database etc is infinitely more important than the physical location of where the person browsing the site is, or where the dns is registered compared to where the site is being hosted. Maybe you can save yourself 0.1 seconds of loading time by moving host so that your server's hosted in the same country as your dns is registered in and where most of your customers are from, but nobody would notice the difference. They would, however, notice the difference if the code on the site was tuned or if the server/database was less heavily loaded.

Some people might say "I moved my host to a usa server, and it loaded a lot faster", to which I'd say "well it's on a different server now, maybe that new server's simply better configured or not as heavily loaded as the older one; I doubt the location has made the difference"

If most of your customers are from the usa, then, yes, maybe it's a good idea to host the server in the usa too, but, to me, the loading/configuration and reliability of the server/host and tuning the code/database is infinitely more important than the location.

well, that's my 2 cents' worth anyway; I might be wrong; feel free to correct me anyone/everyone if I'm talking rubbish.

Simon Barnaby
Developer
[email protected]
www.BigYellowZone.com
www.BigYellowKey.com
Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/bigyellowzone
Web Design, Online Marketing and VPASP addons

Edited by - devshb on July 20 2011 14:10:52
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chrisredco
VP-ASP Super User

282 Posts

Posted - July 20 2011 :  22:52:08  Show Profile  Visit chrisredco's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Once again, a fine education from Simon. Your time and information is always appreciated.

Redco Audio
www.redco.com
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Steve2507
VP-ASP Expert

590 Posts

Posted - July 21 2011 :  03:59:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Could they be talking about (in a round about way) a CDN (content delivery network) similar to Amazons S3 and Cloudfront?

If they are then it is definitely worth doing, although I wouldn't go with Comodo.

We have just gone over to using Amazon for all images, css and js files and the improvements are pretty good. We used to have our own dedicated server for static files but by going over to S3 we are saving approx 90% on these costs. Add in the speed boost for customers and the reduced work load on our server and it makes a very good deal for us.

Also with regards to the Comodo problem that Simon mentioned. Tried it a few years ago and it lasted a total of 4 hours on our site. It simply kept crashing the site. Money wasted but lesson learnt.


Steve
Sex toys from a UK sex shop including vibrators and dildos.

Edited by - Steve2507 on July 21 2011 04:01:44
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Steve2507
VP-ASP Expert

590 Posts

Posted - July 21 2011 :  04:09:50  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
PS

Chris @ Redco I like the idea of the Google translate option at the top of the page, sorry about this but I feel a bit of plagiarism coming on.


Steve
Sex toys from a UK sex shop including vibrators and dildos.
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chrisredco
VP-ASP Super User

282 Posts

Posted - July 21 2011 :  17:48:52  Show Profile  Visit chrisredco's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Steve,

Steal away! We have quite a few International customers so I'm sure it gets a fair amount of use.

Redco Audio
www.redco.com
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support
Administrator

4266 Posts

Posted - July 21 2011 :  21:36:29  Show Profile  Visit support's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Steve,

I am interested in your comments about moving images to Amazon, JS and CSS.

Can provide some more info on this? Sounds like it could be something of interest to everyone out there on the forum possibly if it helps with speed and keeping costs down!

Chris, I think I will create a FAQ for the Google translate bar. That works very nicely.

This post has raised some great topics.

Thank you.

Cam Flanigan
VP-ASP Cart Support

Follow us on Twitter:
http://www.twitter.com/vpasp
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Steve2507
VP-ASP Expert

590 Posts

Posted - July 22 2011 :  05:00:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Cam,

The great think about the Amazon service is that they cache files correctly so you can give them nice long expiry dates and they have various centres around the worldso your data isn't uploaded to one server, instead it is copied to dozens around the globe. Then when someone calls a file they get it from the closest server to them. So Australian customers will be getting all the graphics on our sites from servers in Australia, UK from UK servers etc.

The downside is that if you change a static file like css you have to rename the new one otherwise the cached version may be loaded by mistake. So you have to start playing with version numbers and ensuring all references to the file are changed in header files (I think we are on version 45 for css and version 6 for js). However on the plus side for this you can easily go back to previous versions and it becomes second nature to save the file as a new version before you make changes

One thing that caught me out in the early days (I spent hours trying to work it out) are lowercase and uppercase in filenames. As Amazon uses linux then the filenames have to match exactly, whereas I was used to windows and so it doesn't matter if it matches exactly.

The way Amazon works is you upload to a "bucket" in S3. Then you create a distribution based on that bucket. This then generates the base url for the files.

For example our css comes from http://d21al14wgk71pa.cloudfront.net and our images come from http://d21al14wgk71pa.cloudfront.net, eg - http://d21al14wgk71pa.cloudfront.net/Img-Home/fetish.jpg. So all links have to be complete and not relative.

Of course a big problem in the beginning is ensuring all calls are to the correct url and I'm still picking up the odd file I've missed. But all I do is regularly check the logs for files ending in gif or jpg. Then see if it has been called from one of our pages. If it has then I know to change that page.

As for costs. We were spending 350 a month on our image server. For July our Amazon bill is so far $17 (no I haven't missed a zero off the end). In all honesty though not all our sites were transferred at the beginning of the month, but I estimate it will cost us $35 a month and possibly $70 during our busy periods.

If you do decide to go down this route look at getting a Bucket Manager like Bucket Explorer as the Amazon upload system is terrible.

Hastle at the beginning but now well worth it.


Steve
Sex toys from a UK sex shop including vibrators and dildos.
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support
Administrator

4266 Posts

Posted - July 24 2011 :  05:56:25  Show Profile  Visit support's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi all,

We have posted a FAQ on how to add the Google translator to your site. Works brilliantly and you can have it implemented in less than 5 minutes using the Layout Manager.

Nice! Thanks Chris.

Steve, thanks for posting this. Looks extremely interesting. I will look further into it and see how this can work for others.

Thank you.

Cam Flanigan
VP-ASP Cart Support

Follow us on Twitter:
http://www.twitter.com/vpasp
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Steve2507
VP-ASP Expert

590 Posts

Posted - September 03 2011 :  11:16:34  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thought I'd give you an update on hosting images etc with Amazon.

We've just had our first full month, full hosting bill - $37.94. So it has definitely been worth doing.


Steve
Sex toys from a UK sex shop including vibrators and dildos.
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