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Minify plugin - worth using?

I was reading a thread by Kasper in the Developers forum where Todd says:

Excellent post. I've actually been working on a feature branch that changes around the way css gets loaded to hopefully increase page speed. Basically, what we do is a better version of the (usually not-working) minify plugin...

Minify seems to be working OK for me, although I have to clear the cache files each time I enable a plugin or change some CSS. My question is, is the Minify plugin worth using in 2.0.18.4? Are there any performance tradeoffs that might outway the benefit of turning 20 CSS and JS files into two?

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    whu606whu606 I'm not a SuperHero; I just like wearing tights... MVP

    @50sQuiff

    If you use a tool like Page Speed, or a site like Pingdom with and without minify, it is clear there is really only benefit to minifying js and css files.

    I've recently started using CloudFlare, which is free, and acts as a CDN, but includes minify options.

    It has sped up my site load times significantly, and halved my bandwidth usage.

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    50sQuiff50sQuiff ✭✭
    edited November 2012

    Interesting @whu606 . Do you find Cloudflare reliable? With the free account do you ever get downtime or performance issues? I just read their website and their free service seems to good to be true.

    I take your point on minifying in general. But I'm wondering if there are any issues with the Minify plugin for Vanilla, based on Todd's comments that it needs to scan the filesystem every page load and is 'usually not-working'.

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    whu606whu606 I'm not a SuperHero; I just like wearing tights... MVP

    @50sQuiff

    I've had no more, and probably less, problems with downtime since signing up with CloudFlare.

    I'm savvy, but not savant, when it comes to web stuff, so I certainly found a marked increase in page load times as a result.

    I'd certainly recommend giving CloudFlare a go - it's easy to set up, and easy to switch off temporarily or permanently.

    It may be that people who already have their sites optimised may not notice much benefit.

    Part of the reason for going with CloudFlare was that it has a built in minify option, so I no longer had to worry about it myself.

    Hopefully someone else will be able to speak specifically about the Minify plugin.

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    Shameless bump. Any comments @Todd?

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    ToddTodd Chief Product Officer Vanilla Staff

    If Minify works for you then by all means use it. Having your css/js put into one file will be a HUGE benefit in for most users of your forum.

    However, Minify has a lot of problems and incompatibility with other plugins. That's really the only reason not to use it or tools like it. But hey, if you've got it to work then go for it.

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    Thanks! I'll monitor things whenever I add a new plugin I guess. I did come across a few glitches which I managed to solve with an !important here or there :)

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    But since css and js are usually cached by the browser, the primary benefit is on initial load only.

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