If you are a WordPress Blogger, than you can start using MaxCDN instantly with the help of WP Super Cache Plugin. Let’s check out in this post How to easily Configure / Install MaxCDN with WP Super Cache for WordPress?, along with some additional tips.
Assuming you already have a Self Hosted WordPress Blog and a MaxCDN Account, we are ready to follow this guide:
Primary Step: Creating Pull Zone in MaxCDN and CNAME in Web Hosting Control Panel
2. Once you are logged in to your MaxCDN Dashboard, we need to create a Pull Zone. For creating a Pull Zone, Go to Manage Zones >> Click on Create Pull Zone Button:
3. On the immediate next page, you need to fill out following information:
- Enter anything, say your Website Name/Nick Name, in the Pull Zone Name field
- Enter your WordPress Blog URL EXACTLY (with http://) in the Origin Server URL field. If your blog URL doesn’t have www in it, then there’s no need to enter www.
- Enter the URL which you want to use with your WordPress Blog for serving content from CDN in the Custom CDN Domain field. E.g. cdn.abcd.com, files.xyz.net etc. – No need to enter http:// and www here
- Enter any keyword(s) relevant to your Blog in the Labels field OR leave it blank
- Enable Gzip Compression by checking the box in front of Compression. Gzip compression will be valid for text, html, js, css and xml files.
4. Once you have entered all the above mentioned details precisely, hit the Create Button and after few minutes, your MaxCDN Pull Zone will be ready. You will also get your personalized CDN URL or Temporary CDN URL on the next page. The URL will look something like:
* Here abc and xyz will depend on the information you entered earlier while creating a Pull Zone and on your MaxCDN Account Information.
Using this personalized / temporary CDN URL you need to configure CNAME Record in your Web Hosting Control Panel (cPanel etc.), so that your Custom CDN Domain URL starts working (cdn.abcd.com, files.xyz.net etc.) instantly!
5. Now Login to your Web Hosting Control Panel (cPanel in my case) > look for Simple DNS Zone Editor and click on it:
On the immediate next page, select the Domain Name from the Drop Down Menu (in case of multiple Domains are added to your Account) and you will see Add a CNAME Record here:
In the Name field Enter the Custom CDN Domain URL which you want to use with your WordPress Blog (cdn.abcd.com, files.xyz.net etc.) and in the CNAME field, enter the Personalized / Temporary CDN URL (abc.xyz.netdna-cdn.com) which you recently obtained from MaxCDN after successfully creating a Pull Zone.
* No need to enter http:// and www here
Once, you have entered the information precisely, hit the Add CNAME Record Button and CNAME Record for your Domain Name will be instantly added and activated.
Configure / Install MaxCDN with WP Super Cache for WordPress
1. Install WP Super Cache Plugin for your WordPress Installation and then head over to the CDN Tab of WP Super Cache. Here check the box is front of Enable CDN Support and enter the Off-site URL, which will be your Custom CDN URL, with http://:
When you are entering the Off Site URL in WP Super Cache CDN Settings, there’s NO need to add www. Also, there is no need to configure anything else here.
Note: Just after enabling CDN for your WordPress Blog, if you only see blank white pages or broken WordPress site, have patience!, as the data from your Hosting Server is being sent and stored on MaxCDN Servers worldwide. It may take upto 15-20 minutes before you see your site working normally again.
Additional Tips for using MaxCDN with your WordPress Blog
Once you have successfully created Pull Zone, hit the Manage Button in front of your Custom CDN URL present in your MaxCDN Dashboard and you will be able to configure following things on immediate next page:
1. Test and Edit Origin IP Address:
The origin IP Address for your WordPress Blog will be the IP Address of the server on which your WordPress Blog is hosted. On the settings tab of your Pull Zone Record, you will be able to test as well as edit the origin server IP Address:
This option is very useful when you move your WordPress Blog from one hosting provider to another OR the IP Address of your account changes.
The Origin IP Address is automatically fetched by MaxCDN Servers when you first create a Pull Zone Record. But, if the IP Address of your web hosting account changes, then you can update / edit and test the New IP Address here. If the validation of your New IP Address is successful, then you will be getting following message:
2. Custom Domains:
On the Settings tab, you can set more than one Custom CDN URL (sub-domains for serving CDN content) for your WordPress Blog. This option is helpful when you want to serve different content of your blog using different Custom CDN URLs or sub-domains.
For example, you can serve CSS of your WordPress Blog using abc.xyz.com and server images and other files using pqr.xyz.com, If you opt for this option, than you need to configure CNAME for each Custom CDN URL in your Web Hosting Account Control Panel, as described in the last point of Primary Step above.
3. Compression Settings:
MaxCDN also allows you to compress all your content by default using Gzip. This means content of your WordPress Blog will come to visitors browser in Gziped / compressed form. Using this option you can not only save your valuable CDN Bandwidth, but also increase your WordPress Blog loading time.
Following are the content / file types currently supported by MaxCDN Gzip Compression:
It’s recommended to leave everything enabled / checked here, unless you are experiencing problems with any file type present in your WordPress Blog.
4. Delete Pull Zone
On the settings tab of your Pull Zone, you can also delete an entire Pull Zone Record you earlier created. Use this option with CAUTION, as all your data from CDN Servers will be completely deleted.
This option comes very handy, when you want to create a NEW Pull Zone Record or close your MaxCDN Account.
5. Cache Tab
The cache tab in your MaxCDN Pull Zone Record allows you to Purge (clear and re-build / re-request / re-sync) any individual / all file(s) from CDN edge servers. This option comes very handy when there’s a problem in loading certain files in various browsers or there’s a major content update on your blog (like Theme, Script, CSS changes etc.). Advanced users can also debug cache on this tab.
Any changes to the content of your original WordPress Blog are sent to CDN Server almost instantly, but if you think the CDN Server is still serving old / outdated content, only then it’s suggested to Purge All / individual file(s).
6. Advanced Settings:
On the advanced settings tab for your Pull Zone, you will find following entities:
- HTTP Referrer Protection: This option allows you to prevent plagiarism of your WordPress Blog files hosted on MaxCDN Server. By default, HTTP Referrer Protection is disabled for every Pull Zone Record / your Account, but you can enable it anytime, if you think your hosted files on MaxCDN Server are plagiarized somewhere else (on some other domain name).
- Query String: This option when enabled treats every Query Strings (a part of URL which contains data meant for various types of web applications like web based CGI application etc.) as different cacheable item.
- Content Disposition / Forced File Download: This option, when enabled, forces each and every file to be downloaded on ones computer, instead of opening them in browser. For example, if you are hosting a PDF on MaxCDN Server and whenever someone tries to access this PDF file, it will directly start downloading onto your visitor’s computer.
- Custom robots.txt: If you are already using a robots.txt file meant for various web crawlers, then it’s suggested to keep this option disabled. Not of much use! But, if you intend to use this option, it will add a robots.txt to the root directory of your WordPress Blog which restricts / disallows page crawl by search engine like Google, Yahoo!, Bing etc.
- Override Cache-Control Header: This feature ignores the origin Cache Control Header and sets every request to have a Maximum Age of: 1 day, 7 days, 1 Month or 12 Months. The default value is: No Override.
- Default Cache Time: This feature sets any request with a no Cache Control header from the origin to stay on the server for 1 day, 7 days, 1 Month or 12 Months. By default, it is set to 1 day for every account
7. SSL Tab
If you want to use HTTPS / SSL for serving secure content from MaxCDN servers to your visitor’s browser, than you need to enable this feature. If you opt to use this feature, keep in mind, your Personalized / Temporary CDN URL will change from abc.xyz.netdna-cdn.com to abc.xyz.netdna-ssl.com and then you need to configure CNAME accordingly.
For using this feature you need to either have a shared SSL certificate or Custom SSL Certificate for your account. It’s suggested to directly contact MaxCDN support department, if you want to use their SSL Feature.
Hope this guide helps many webmasters in configuring MaxCDN at its best for their WordPress Blog. If you have any doubt, feel free to post it in the comments area below.