NGFB v7.6.5, WPSSO v2.6.3, WPSSO SSB v1.0.6.2

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The NGFB and WPSSO plugins have been updated with additional features — two new options, ‘Enable Excerpt for Pages’ and ‘Enable Tags for Pages’, have been added to the Advanced settings page. An addon for the HeadSpace2 SEO plugin is also available with the Pro versions. A new filter for ‘http_request_host_is_external’ has been added, to allow the update URL to pass `wp_http_validate_url()` checks when ‘reject_unsafe_urls’ is enabled. The ‘Plugin Features’ side metabox code and display layout has also been improved.

NGFB and WPSSO SSB also include a small fix for the social buttons CSS ID string, making sure it only lists a single ID value.

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How Fast is the WPSSO Social Sharing Buttons Plugin?

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Plugins that add social sharing buttons should be fairly light and fast — they generally don’t need to fetch much information about a page, like an SEO or SMO / SSO plugin does. Here are some example “execution time” metrics from the P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler) plugin, using WP Test Data, and several popular social sharing plugins (along with the WordPress Core and Twenty Fourteen theme for reference). The plugins were configured to include the Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest sharing buttons at the bottom of single posts and pages.

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Developer Special – Buy one, Get one Free

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The WPSSO and NGFB plugins for WordPress are licensed based on the WordPress Site Address. Typically, a Development, Staging, and Production website – for example – would require 3 licenses. In the spirit of helping our fellow developers, we are offering a free license for every license purchased – on all past and future purchases. So, for example, if you purchased a license for example.com (or www.example.com), you can also register dev.example.com using the same Authentication ID. This allows developers to purchase a license, develop a customer’s website, and then change the Site Address upon delivery, without having to purchase an additional license for the production website.

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How Fast is WPSSO Compared to Other Plugins?

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There is a huge variety of available plugins for WordPress — 30,326 plugins as of today — and if you’ve tried more than a few, you’ll have noticed a marked difference in their quality as well (functionality, user interface, stability, etc.). If you know your way around PHP, you should take a moment to browse the source code of a plugin before installing it. You’ll notice quite a difference there as well. ;-) You can view WPSSO’s source code directly from WordPress.org’s SVN repository. If you do, please excuse the lack of comments — it’s on my To-Do list. ;-)

I started developing the NextGEN Facebook (NGFB) plugin about a year ago, when I broke my foot and was stuck in bed / on the couch for much of the day. NGFB is the foundation for WPSSO, minus the sharing buttons and their related features (shortcodes, widgets, stylesheets, javascript caching, and url shortening). WPSSO has 25% less code, is 0.0070 secs faster per page load, and is often preferred for websites that already have (or don’t need) a set of sharing buttons.

I’ve always kept an eye on performance, and used WordPress’s object and transient caches when possible, along with disk based caching when appropriate. NGFB and WPSSO are fast, but until recently, I’d never compared their performance to other plugins. As I prepare WPSSO v2.4.4 for release later this week, I took some time to double-check its performance and that of a few other plugins as well.

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