How To Configure Heartbeat Control For WordPress

When it comes to optimizing WordPress, sometimes you need to attack an issue that doesn’t directly make your website faster. The Heartbeat API is a piece of JavaScript that allows WordPress to ping your browser to see if it is still active. This is used for monitoring for features like autosave.

However, if you are on a slower server or you’re simply trying to optimize the website to use fewer resources on your server, the Heartbeat API can be a major source of stress for the server. Therefore, it’s typically recommended to optimize the usage of this API and if you’re new to WordPress you will want to use a plugin.

How to Configure the Heartbeat Control Plugin

Here is a video guide we created that shows you the recommended settings which we have also written below.

The first thing you will want to do is install the Heartbeat Control plugin from the repository.

After the plugin is installed, we recommend configuring the plugin with the following settings.

[Disable] Frontend Option: We recommend disabling this feature altogether. This is the ideal setting for most websites; unless you have a dynamic front-end feature that requires Ajax or auto-saving. Disabling this should not cause any problems.

For the post editor screen, you can keep on the allow OR select modify and increase the option to 60.

[Disable] WordPress Dashboard Option: Should be set to either disable (which is likely to cause issues on more complex websites) OR modify heartbeat and increase the time to 300.

Closing Thoughts

After decreasing the Heartbeat API tick speed and optimizing its usage on your homepage, your website should be faster. It should also use less resources, thus making the backend a little snappier.

If you have any questions regarding the video tutorial or Heartbeat Control in general, feel free to ask below.

scott hartley

About the author

Scott is a web performance geek, lover of all things coffee, and avid video game player. His WordPress work delves into web performance, web security, and SEO.

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