LiteSpeed Cache Review – Boost Performance and Instantly Improve Speed
- Easy to Install
- Settings are many
- WebP Conversion
- Heartbeat Control
- Page-Level Caching
- Full CDN requires LiteSpeed Server
- QUIC.cloud needed for extra features
- Expertise required to configure
LiteSpeed Cache (LS) is a wordpress optimization plugin with over 2 million active installations.
LiteSpeed cache is a server level cache and faster than PHP cache.
It improves the page load time. Scores on several speed testing tools like Google PageSpeed Insights, GTMetrix, Pingdom will improve with LiteSpeed optimization features.
In addition we want Image, database, page optimization, CDN support, critical CSS generation, HTTP/2 push, object code support, heartbeat control, WebP Image conversion, browser caching, multi-site support etc.
Page Speed Cache and Minification are the two optimization features which we see in any site acceleration plugin.
These features do not require a LiteSpeed web server. You can use them on any hosting. As some hosts use Nginx, Apache etc kind of servers to host the WordPress files, general features will still work.
Table of Contents
What is Cache?
It is a temporary space on a server or device that makes the website or app run quickly and efficiently. When web page opened up for first time, it stores all important information like files, code, images stored in the cache. Used to open website quickly and improve page loading time.
You can try other cache plugin like Hummingbird Pro to implement GZIP compression and similar features.
Caches found in hardware and software. The CPU has its own cache. Instead of contacting server for every bit of information, data stored in cache. Computers, Apps, Browsers, Images, Mobiles all have their inherent system of cache.
Similarly WordPress sites have cache plugins to take advantage of this mechanism on the server.
What is Page Cache?
It is a transparent cache originating from hard-disks or solid-state-drives. Mostly they get their data from secondary storage devices. RAM has its own space to store certain pieces of information as cache. But as it is limited, we either use another server or content delivery network (CDNs) to make use of page cache.
Pages are modified to bring into the local cache system. These are also called “dirty pages”. But the end result is secure and unmodified. As a result, you load pages quickly on the visitor browser. Thus, it reduces load on the server and improves performance of the site.
You can read this performance guide if you decide to try an alternative to LS Cache plugin.
What is LiteSpeed Cache?
LS Cache also known as “LiteSpeed Cache” is a built-in feature of LiteSpeed server products. It is an in-built, efficient, fast, dynamic performance improving caching method of LS products.
Where required, It converts the dynamic content into static pages. Repetitive resources are then sent from the LS cache to reduce the load on the server. They not only cache PHP pages but also images, js, css, html and other resources.
It is similar to the Apache mod_cache mechanism that improves the performance of the site. You need a LiteSpeed server to implement it or any other alternative mentioned below. The reverse-proxy layer mechanism is more powerful than add-on cache packages like Varnish cache which are seen in DreamPress kind of service.
The LiteSpeed Cache Engine part of LS Cache can be controlled through .htaccess code blocks. But a WordPress plugin provides a clean interface and reduces the “geeky” knowledge between the site and the engine.
Web Cache apps have rules that decide what content should be cached, how long it should cache and what events can trigger object level caching etc. LS Cache plugin does the same work of communicating to the LS Cache Engine with easy options.
If you want to improve the page speed and core web vitals score of your WordPress site, then you need the right configuration settings for LiteSpeed Cache plugin. Read this guide to know the best settings.
What is the Value of LS Cache?
The LS Cache plugin talks to the LS server and its in-built cache (LS Cache). This provides page-level caching and improves performance. Once the visitor requires a WordPress article, the server makes PHP requests and DB queries.
Page Cache bypasses this server resource intensive tasks and delivers the page directly to the audience. In this simple way, a lot of time is saved in contacting the server back-end and fast delivery of results.
The basic features are free. To use the exclusive set of properties you need to have one of the following.
- LiteSpeed Web Server Enterprise with LSCache Module (v5.0.10+)
- LiteSpeed WebADC (v2.0+)
- OpenLiteSpeed (v1.4.17+)
- QUIC.cloud CDN
Most of the common features will work with any server like Nginx or Apache etc.
LS Cache Plugin General Features
- Free QUIC.cloud CDN Cache
- Object Cache (Memcached/LSMCD/Redis) Support+
- Image Optimization (Lossless/Lossy)
- Minify inline & external CSS/JS
- Combine CSS/JS
- Automatically generate Critical CSS
- Lazy-load images/iframes
- Responsive Image Placeholders
- Multiple CDN Support+
- Load CSS Asynchronously
- Defer/delay JS loading
- Browser Cache Support+
- Database Cleaner and Optimizer
- PageSpeed score (including Core Web Vitals) optimization
- OPcode Cache Support+
- HTTP/2 Push for CSS/JS (on web servers that support it)
- DNS Prefetch
- Cloudflare API
- Single Site and Multisite (Network) support
- Import/Export settings
- Attractive, easy-to-understand interface
- WebP image format support
- Heartbeat control
+ This service is not provided by the LSCache plugin, nor is it guaranteed to be installed by your service provider. However, the plugin is compatible with the service if it is in use on your site.
LS Cache Plugin Exclusive Features
- Automatic page caching to greatly improve site performance
- Automatic purge of related pages based on certain events
- Private cache for logged-in users
- Caching of WordPress REST API calls
- Separate caching of desktop and mobile views
- Ability to schedule purge for specified URLs
- WooCommerce and bbPress support
- WordPress CLI commands
- API system for easy cache integration
- Exclude from cache by URI, Category, Tag, Cookie, User Agent
- Smart preload crawler with support for SEO-friendly sitemap
- Multiple crawlers for cache varies
- HTTP/2 support
- HTTP/3 & QUIC support
- ESI (Edge Side Includes) support*
- Widgets and Shortcodes as ESI blocks* (requires Classic Widgets plugin for WP 5.8+)
* Feature not available in OpenLiteSpeed
How Does LiteSpeed Cache Plugin Work?
All cache files can be purged manually. If you want to do it automatically you can make use of the LiteSpeed Cache plugin API.
How does QUIC.cloud Work?
If you do not have the LiteSpeed Server, then you can make use of QUIC.cloud as the CDN and other optimizations. These include image optimization, CSS optimization and Low-Quality Image Place holders.
Pro rata basis rates are applicable on QUIC.cloud service. Some free usage is provided. After that you need to pay based on your usage.
For some optimization features, data is transferred to a remote QUIC.cloud server, processed and returned back to the original server. If the CDN option is enabled, then the site may be replicated on global servers. But in all these cases, QUIC or LiteSpeed employees will not have access to your data. Only for technical and maintenance work.
Performance of LiteSpeed Cache with QUIC.cloud
If you want to take the maximum benefit of the LiteSpeed Cache plugin then you need to use its Pro benefits or the QUIC.cloud CDN extra features. If you are using Apache, Nginx etc kind of server then QUIC.cloud can improve page speed score and speed.
Web Vitals with LS Cache + QUIC.cloud on Desktop
Web Vitals with LS Cache + QUIC.cloud using AMP
In simple terms LiteSpeed Cache plugin is the best of both worlds. It benefits minification, page-level caching and CDN. You can also optimize for WebP image conversion and control Heartbeat at various levels.
The plugin has ideal settings that will make your site blazing fast. If you configure it the right way then ranking in Google will also improve if your UX is not that good. We already have LCP, FID, CLS as core web vital metrics to measure UX experience.
In 2022, these signals are important to rank high in Bing and Google. LiteSpeed Cache makes it better to improve user experience and speed. Thus making it the best caching WordPress plugin.