PHP-APC: Speed up your web applications!

As regular readers of this blog might know I have written quite some tools using the different API’s of search engines, and always found them quite useful. When I was implementing my sitewide search function, one of the things that bothered me that it was a bit slow. I knew that I had seen some caching implementations on the Yahoo PHP developer center, but I hadn’t bothered up till then to look at them a bit better.

Now I did, and I found the cacheAPC example to be very, very easy. It relies on the Alternative PHP Cache, an opcode cache PECL extension for PHP. I wrote two functions, which I then put in to all my pieces of code which I’ve published that use a lot of calls to the different API’s. The first is curlopen, the function I use to open connections:

[code]function curlopen($request) {
	$ch = curl_init();
	curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_URL, $request);
	curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
	curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_TIMEOUT, 100);
	curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_FOLLOWLOCATION, true);
	$results = curl_exec ($ch);
	return $results;

The second one is the actual cache function, look at how easy it is:

[code]function request_cache($url, $ttl) {
	if(!$doc = apc_fetch($url)) {
		$doc = curlopen($url);
		if ($doc === false) return false;
		apc_store($url,$doc, $ttl);
	return $doc;

It basically does three things:

  1. It looks if the requested resource is already in the cache, and if it is, it fetches that;
  2. If it’s not, it opens it through curlopen and stores it in the cache;
  3. It returns the requested data;

As you can see the request_cache function takes two parameters: the request url and the TTL, which, in seconds, determines how long that resource should be cached. Now if you request a PageRank for a URL, it’s fairly safe to set this to 24 hours, and you can see how much requests this saves!

Coming up next!

15 Responses to PHP-APC: Speed up your web applications!

  1. Ondra
    Ondra  • 16 years ago

    Thanks for quick introduction to APC, it was exactly what I was looking for. PS: serene discussion above :)

  2. Joost de Valk
    Joost de Valk  • 17 years ago

    No. You can hire me for Eur 75 per hour.

  3. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    can you please send one complete application using
    apc cache please it’s very urgent.
    thank you.

  4. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    sorry not memcache in APc cache

  5. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    if i use In my application can i change anything in that 2 parts
    means in curl and memcache

  6. Joost de Valk

    Well this function uses curlopen to request the data from the URL when it’s not currently in the cache.

  7. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    why can we get the url from curl, actually we just want to
    check the data available in that cache only

  8. Joost de Valk

    No CURL works on everything.

  9. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    is this curl works on ftp only

  10. Joost de Valk

    It’s a function I wrote that get’s the content from a URL. Basically the CURL version of file_get_contents.

  11. rakesh
    rakesh  • 17 years ago

    what is the purpose of curlopen

  12. steve M
    steve M  • 17 years ago

    Thanks, Despite the title of my original post, I think I agree with your post. Of course.What if we increase TTL timing, will it boost cache.i would like to know does this application support SEO.

  13. steve M
    steve M  • 17 years ago

    Good article in a simple usefull understandable style,What if we increase the TTL,will it be more cache boost.I would like know does it support SEO?

  14. Joost de Valk

    It doesn’t change any output, so yes, it is. It works server side before anything is written to the client.

  15. Hong Kong SEO
    Hong Kong SEO  • 17 years ago

    But is this application SEO friendly?