We have a site in the US that works fairly well with 1-3 second response time with page sizes of 200-400kB in size on average. When we have users in Australia use the system via a VPN (accessing the same system hosted in the US) there is typically a 3-10 second response time.

One of the thoughts was to turn on IIS 6 HTTP Compression (for static and dynamic) to improve the performance. Will turning on this option help with the page load performance? To what extent?

  • Did you mean kb or kB? – MDMarra Jun 13 '12 at 20:03
  • kB - so not tremendously large - but pretty standard master/detail pages of data. – Arthur Frankel Jun 13 '12 at 20:10

For almost any instance, HTTP Compression is highly recommended unless it breaks something. There are a few edge cases (none come to immediate mind), but unless you have specific problems related to it then enable the compression.

You're likely to see a 50% compression ratio on any files over a few KB, which is significant if you have any real bandwidth. It raises server load a bit, but that is probably not an issue here.

What compression won't help is latency, but as far as bandwidth and transfer time you should see a lot of improvement.

  • What sort of performance improvement do you think I would see in my scenario (obviously difficult to know but just an educated guess - 10% improvement or 50% or?) – Arthur Frankel Jun 13 '12 at 20:17
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    Edited to include the compression ratio normally seen. It's generally 10% for very small (1-10KB) files and ramps up to 50% or so after that. This is mostly for text; obviously you won't see much additional compression on optimized JPEG images. – Hyppy Jun 13 '12 at 20:18
  • +1 compression "just works" in IIS6 although in IIS7 you are provided more options on conditionally compressing specific content-types. All modern web browsers support gzip, deflate - including mobile browsers like Safari/WebKit on iOS and Chrome/WebKit on android. – tacos_tacos_tacos Jun 13 '12 at 20:36

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