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Introducing Server Side Caching For Joomla and Drupal

April 12, 2018

Joomla and Drupal users, get ready for a major performance boost!

LiteSpeed Cache, the caching plugin allowing Varial Hosting customers to achieve lightning fast WordPress performance is now available for Joomla and Drupal!

Our server side cache can make your website load hundreds of times faster and reach many more visitors.

Improve your website performance today by installing our LiteSpeed Cache plugins:

How to install LiteSpeed Cache for Joomla
How to install LiteSpeed Cache for Drupal
How to install LiteSpeed Cache for WordPress

Need help installing these plugins? Simply contact our Support department and we’ll install them for you free of charge!

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Content Delivery Network Expands to 150 Locations Including Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg

April 2, 2018

CloudFlare, our content delivery network partner recently expanded their network to 150 cities across the world, including points of presence in three new Canadian cities, Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg.

With our company and data center located in Saskatoon, this is particularly exciting news for us as CloudFlare is now a participant in the Saskatoon Internet Exchange and can interconnect locally with our data center partner to exchange traffic faster and with lower latency.

Varial Hosting customers can easily activate the CloudFlare content delivery network from their cPanel control panels by following this guide:
https://varialhosting.com/support/faq/hosting/#cloudflare

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WordPress Cache Plugin Updated to v2.0

March 9, 2018

LiteSpeed Cache, the caching plugin allowing Varial Hosting customers to achieve lightning fast Wordpress performance has just been updated to version 2.0. This new version includes big improvements to image optimization, bug fixes and more.

Customers can update this plugin through their WordPress admins or install it by following this guide: https://varialhosting.com/support/faq/wordpress/#caching

Changelog:

v2.0

  • [NEW FEATURE] Image Optimization Added level up guidance.
  • [REFACTOR] Image Optimization Refactored Image Optimization class.
  • [IAPI] Image Optimization New European Image Optimization server (EU2).
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Manual pull action continues pulling until complete.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] CDN Multiple CDNs can now be randomized for a single resource.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Improved compatibility of long src images.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Reduced runtime load.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Avoid potential loss/reset of notified images status when pulling.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Avoid duplicated optimization for multiple records in Media that have the same image source.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Image Optimization Fixed issue where phantom images continued to show in not-yet-requested queue.
  • [BUGFIX] Core Improved compatibility when upgrading outside of WP Admin. (@jikatal @TylorB)
  • [BUGFIX] Crawler Improved HTTP/2 compatibility to avoid erroneous blacklisting.
  • [BUGFIX] Crawler Changing Delay setting will use server variable for min value validation if set.
  • [UPDATE] Crawler Added HTTP/2 protocol switch in the Crawler settings.
  • [UPDATE] Removed unnecessary translation strings.
  • [GUI] Display translated role group name string instead of English values. (@Richard Hordern)
  • [GUI] Added Join LiteSpeed Slack link.
  • [GUI] Import / Export Cosmetic changes to Import Settings file field.
  • [INTEGRATION] Improved compatibility with WPML Media for Image Optimization. (@szmigieldesign)
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Next Generation QUIC Protocol Now Supported

October 20, 2017

QUIC (Quick UDP Internet Connections) is a next generation internet protocol developed by and in use across most of Google’s services. It improves upon HTTP/2 by reducing the time it takes to begin serving content.

By replacing TCP with UDP, and encrypting the majority of its payload, QUIC shortens the handshake process by a factor of two or three, all while maintaining data security. </end technical mumbo jumbo>

Today you can use QUIC on more than just Gmail as it is now available to all Varial Hosting customers!

To start using QUIC your website just needs to be accessed over HTTPS from a supported browser.

That’s all there is to it! Enjoy faster page loading times!

QUIC is enabled by default in Google’s Chrome browser and support has been recently added to the Opera browser as an optional setting.

(Please note that QUIC is not yet supported on websites that have the CloudFlare content delivery network enabled.)

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WordPress Cache Plugin Updated with Support for Edge Side Includes

September 1, 2017

LiteSpeed Cache, the caching plugin allowing Varial Hosting customers to achieve lightning fast Wordpress performance has just been updated to version 1.2.0.1. This new version includes a major new feature, support for edge side includes (ESI)!

What are Edge Side Includes?

ESI allows you to serve both public and privately cached content together on one page. In other words, ESI allows you to designate parts of your page as separate fragments that are treated differently from the rest of the page.

For example, if you use WordPress’ Recent Posts widget, normally all pages would be purged and recached whenever a new post is published in order for that widget to display the most up to date information. With ESI enabled, all pages remain cached with and only the widget fragment needing to be purged and recached.

If you use WooCommerce, you can now cache your entire website but leave your shopping cart widget uncached so it always stays up to date for each individual visitor.

Varial Hosting customers can update their LiteSpeed Cache plugin through their WordPress admins or install it by following this guide:
https://varialhosting.com/support/faq/wordpress/#caching

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How to use the official cPanel iPhone and Android Apps

August 30, 2017

Earlier this year cPanel released official mobile apps for iPhone and Android, that allow Varial Hosting customers to easily access their cPanel control panel and Webmail interfaces from their mobile devices.

To get started simply download the cPanel app from the links below or search for “cPanel” in your device’s app store:

Download for iOS
Download for Android

Once downloaded open the cPanel app and press on the + icon at the top left to add an account.

On the next screen you will need to enter your cPanel login information.

Under the Name field, you can type anything to identify the account, such as cPanel.
Under the Address field, type cpanel.yourdomain.com (replacing yourdomain.com with your actual domain name).
Ensure the Service field is set to cPanel.
Next, type in your cPanel username and password. When you hit Connect you will be logged into your cPanel control panel.

You can also use the cPanel app to connect to your email account’s Webmail interface.

To connect to your email, repeat the above process but enter your Webmail login information instead.

Under the Name field, type anything to identify the account, such as Webmail or your email address.
Under the Address field, type webmail.yourdomain.com (replacing yourdomain.com with your actual domain name)
Next, select the Service field and change it to Webmail.
Finally, type in your email address as your username and its password. When you hit Connect you will be logged into your Webmail.

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How to make your WordPress website faster

August 1, 2017

Are you getting the most out of your WordPress website?

WordPress is one of the most popular web applications in the world and powers nearly 80% of all websites hosted on our servers.

We love WordPress and its explosive growth has changed how we think about hosting and made us strive to create a platform that greatly improves both its performance and security.

Last year we launched our next generation platform and optimized WordPress hosting plans, where we pre-install WordPress for new customers and configure it for peak performance and security, but did you know that all Varial Hosting customers can benefit from our powerful new features?

How to make your WordPress website faster:

Regardless of what hosting plan you are subscribed to, all Varial Hosting customers can greatly improve the speed of their WordPress websites by installing this simple plugin, which will enable our server side cache.

When a visitor accesses your website, normally WordPress will use PHP and MySQL to build your site on each and every page they visit. This uses a lot of server resources and will often take a second or two to display depending on the complexity of your website.

When caching is enabled, WordPress will only use PHP and MySQL to build your website the first time a page is requested. Afterwards our server will save and deliver a prebuilt version of that page, which takes only fractions of a second to load. By enabling server side caching you can make your WordPress website load hundreds, if not thousands of times faster!

As our caching feature is built directly into our web server, it will also outperform other popular WordPress caching plugins like WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache which still rely on PHP to function.

Want to speed up your website but not sure where to begin? Simply contact our Support department and we’ll install this plugin for you free of charge!

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PHP 7.1 Now Available

July 30, 2017

For the early adopters out there, PHP 7.1 is now available across all of our servers.

PHP 7.1 builds upon the great improvements brought forward in PHP 7 and introduces several new features for developers which you can read about at:
http://php.net/manual/en/migration71.php

To change your PHP version, simply log into your cPanel and follow this guide:
https://varialhosting.com/support/faq/hosting/#changephp

Please be aware that not all web applications and plugins are compatible with PHP 7 at this time. For best compatibility we recommend using PHP 5.6.

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All Servers Now Protected by Imunify360

June 29, 2017

Earlier this month we enabled free SSL certificates for all customers to much applause and today we have another powerful new security feature to unveil to help protect your websites.

Imunify360 is an advanced firewall developed by our operating system vendor, CloudLinux.

Website attacks have become incredibly sophisticated. We used to be able to easily block brute force attacks by identifying that a visitor has submitted an incorrect password too many times in a short period. Today it is much harder to block these types of attacks as hackers no longer use a single machine but employ massive botnets of hundreds of thousands of infected computers to conduct attacks. Rather than seeing failed login attempts repeatedly coming from a single IP address, we now only see one or two login attempts before the attack switches to a different IP address. This makes it very hard to distinguish legitimate users from hackers and to prevent these attacks from reaching your website since the attacker’s IP address constantly changes every few seconds.

Imunify360 steps in by providing information on botnets and where these attacks are coming from. It uses herd immunity and artificial intelligence to detect new threats and protect all servers running the software. When one server is under attack it can alert other servers, protecting them before the threat ever reaches them.

We’ve been beta testing Imunify360 for several months and have found that our server load has been significantly reduced since we no longer have the overhead of serving websites to these bad visitors and botnets. This means your websites will even load faster as a result!

Now let’s say you’ve legitimately forgot your password and found yourself blocked by our firewall and are now unable to access your website or email. Imunify360 also helps by providing a self-service unblocking tool our customers can use to unblock their IP address without needing to contact our support department.

If you are ever presented with the above page when attempting to visit your website you can simply click the “I’m not a robot” checkbox at the bottom of the page to unblock your IP and proceed to your website.

Easy peasy!

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WordPress Cache Plugin Updated to v1.1.0

June 6, 2017

LiteSpeed Cache, the caching plugin allowing Varial Hosting customers to achieve lightning fast Wordpress performance has just been updated to version 1.1.0. This new version includes bug fixes and several new features.

Customers can update this plugin through their WordPress admins or install it by following this guide: https://varialhosting.com/support/faq/wordpress/#caching

Changelog:

v1.1.0

  • [NEW] Added a crawler – this includes configuration options and a dedicated admin page. Uses wp-cron
  • [NEW] Added integration for WPLister
  • [NEW] Added integration for Avada
  • [UPDATE] General structure of the plugin revamped
  • [UPDATE] Improved look of admin pages
  • [BUGFIX] Fix any/all wp-content path retrieval issues
  • [BUGFIX] Use realpath to clear symbolic link when determining .htaccess paths
  • [BUGFIX] Fixed a bug where upgrading multiple plugins did not trigger a purge all
  • [BUGFIX] Fixed a bug where cli import_options did not actually update the options
  • [REFACTOR] Most of the files in the code were split into more, smaller files
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