Don’t forget to tune your site!

So you have a website, and it is getting some good traffic. Awesome! Now don’t forget to feed the hamsters from time to time or your wheel might stop spinning. Tuning your website helps ensure it functions to its fullest and remains a destination for people to visit.

So what does tuning your website mean? Simply put, check the logs, clear the archives, clear your unused items, perform any database maintenance and make sure your security is up to par. Here are those broken down a little more:

Check the logs
Your webserver or webhost is gathering very useful information…but unless you read and analyze them, why gather the data and take up space? Using weblog analysis applications will help distinguish what is being done to your site by your visitors. It also shows where your visitors may come from…target those heavy hitters!

Clear the archives
As your webserver collects that useful information, the storage requirements grow with the data. Don’t forget to go back and clean up after the webserver from time to time to ensure you are not reaching any space limitations.

Clean your unused items
As your website changes with the times, you might start compiling pages with a “.old” extension. Now is the time to delete those versioned files that may have changed. This also includes any images that are no longer used. Again, this frees up valuable disk space and cut down on clutter.

Perform and database maintenance
Is your website database driven? Many times change history and stats are gathered in your database. Purge and archive routines help keep databases running efficiently and serving content the fastest way possible.

Make sure your security is up to par
Audit your security. Who has access to what and what do they have access to. If you allow public interaction on your website or offer ftp ability to customers, make sure old accounts are removed, passwords for your database logins and admin logins are changed regularly and no anonymous accounts gain access to your site.

Those are just a few hints to help. Please feel free to contribute others!

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