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I could turn on compression and probably knock about 5 or 6 seconds off that time. My problem is that I am on a shared server and anything I push on the server could come back and haunt me if the server is running slow. I have noticed this in the past. If the server is running slow while trying to compress, it could tack on 3 or 4 seconds to my time. This would affect broadband users, who are typically less patient with load times. A broadband user would load 70,000 bytes within a second, but with a slow shared server and compression, that same broadband user could end up waiting 4 or 5 seconds.
The other thing that I am wondering about is with all these dial-up companies offering built in high-speed compression through their services. Why don't I let them compress my pages for me, with no cost to me. Why force my server to compress a page that would have been compressed anyway down the line, possibly with even better, faster compression. It would seem that any dial-up user that cared about speed would have signed up for the high-speed dial-up anyway. If they don't, then they must like watching webpages load slowly.
Are the times of bending over backwards for 56k'ers (by compressing your content for those who wont pay for the high-speed dial-up) over?
No, because affordable broadband availability is still piss-poor in the US.
gzip compression is only for html text, before the server sends out the html it compresses it, at a cost of cpu time. Broadband users don't really require the compression of text as it's pretty irrelevant for them.
A lot, if not most all, dial-up companies offer a slightly higher priced service that will do this same compression before they send the pages to the user. So, now that most dial-up users can get the text compressed through their dial-up service, why should I waste cpu time and possible delays to 56k (who already have compression) and broadband users? The only benifit seems to be those who use dial-up and won't pay for the compression. The question is, should I even bother with those users?
(this referes to a shared server environment)
By the way, gzip compression iss not just helping the straight dial-up user. It also may help you getting spidered.
Why not try it and measure the results?
I know that my pages used to have about a 1 or 2 second initial delay when gzip was turned on that is now gone.
I don't have access to dial-up. I don't even know anybody anymore on dial-up. Unless I sign up for a free month of dial-up somewhere and buy a modem, I don't know how to see results over 56k. Any ideas?