The infrastructure behind, including the hosting and CDN providers

Posted by Paul Braren on Sep 15 2014 in
  • WebDesign
  • If you've ever wondered what fuels, wonder no more. It's all right there, in the What This Site Uses link up above, at the very top of this site. I've collected the details of all the tech that keeps it all humming, for archival reasons too. After all, it's an ever evolving list of products I leverage, although for the last 6 months or so, I've settled into a smoothly running infrastructure that seems to pretty much "just work." I've also enjoyed much less downtime lately as well, see evidence right over at the You'll also notice the response time, for visitors across the globe, has been improved greatly, see TinkerTry Response Time history here. So without further ado, I pull back the curtain a bit, to give you a glimpse at the set of tools I use, to keep all those gears running smoothly, quickly, for you, my valued reader. Feel free to drop a comment below, since I'm highly likely to have at least one or two controversial picks in there. Keep in mind I'm not claiming these are the best set of tools for all WordPress site, I'm merely showing which ones are working well for me lately. Admittedly, it wasn't all super simple to set up, since I admit I was new to web publishing 3 years ago, at site launch. But I have learned lot these past 3 years, configuring most of this stuff up myself, and figured others might find the information of value as well.

    TinkerTry has become a medium size blog, passing 100,000 pageviews per month in 2013, with continued growth ever since. As any blogger that begins as a hobbiest soon learns, once popularity is achieved, keeping everything running quickly and reliably that takes a bit more than cheap shared web hosting can possibly provide. Below, you'll find a list of the components in the "engine" that has been running TinkerTry 24x7 since September of 2013. I think you'll find this list helpful, since I have have experimented with a lot of other web hosts and CDNs since the site was launched way back in 2011, and learned from many growing pains along the way. While this combination works for TinkerTry, I cannot claim to know whether these service providers are the best your blog, since every site has different bottlenecks and requirements. Of course, your speeds will vary.

    I find learning new stuff fun. Over time, I'll be writing even more about the services listed below, including how each was chosen. Full disclosure, some of the links below are affiliate links, which means gets a small commission on any new customer sign-ups. This is one small way to show your support for the extensive information TinkerTry has, at no cost to you. There is no secret sauce here behind TinkerTry, with the incredients to my successful recipe now available to all of you, right here, right now!


    Hosting of is currently at Dediserve's NYC node, on SSD storage that I've tested for excellent throughput with dd test. Network upstream tests at 18Mbps to my home 100 miles away (using 150Mbps connection). My previous hosts maxed out at 5Mbps. How do I know? I tested using their public test file downloads. Also important is the low round trip latency to this nearby location. Saving a blog post change is now a 2-3 second wait. Previously, on shared hosting to a distant datacenter, every little change required 8-15 seconds of wait time. Aggravation I don't need, since I tend to use the WordPress web based editor. A lot. Speed makes me much happier, and apt to produce more quality content produced. With a smile. See also video of the fast and effective Dediserve support crew, and their handling of a brief outage event.

    Interested in Dediserve SSD-based hosting for your blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.


    Known for free speed tests (see sample from TinkerTry here), Pingdom's richly detailed reports tell you exactly what’s up, and what’s not up, at this moment through Real User Monitoring, and historical graphs. If you make a site change, you'll clearly spot slowdowns it may have caused to visitors page load times, right in your emailed daily reports. Other tests include IP ping and http. Easy smartphone notifications of "unplanned" downtime, particular effective when used with the Boxcar 2 push notification app. Interested in monitoring for your own blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.


    All media is delivered from local servers across the globe, for faster page load times worldwide. TinkerTry's detailed implementation tutorial here.

    Interested in Amazon Web Services CloudFront for your blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.


    All comments left below the many articles at TinkerTry are run by this third party commenting engine, which allows for easy third party authentication integration (Google+, Twitter, etc.).

    Interested in Disqus for your blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.

    Automated daily offsite backup engine of entire blog, with easy test restores and complete site restores. Backup history shows each WordPress plugin version installed at any given date, very handy for troubleshooting.

    Interested in blogVault for your WordPress blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.

    Domain name registration and SSL certificates. Here's my SSL CERT's test results for (wildcard means this same cert will cover future subdomains as well, such as

    Interested in using Namecheap for your blog? Sign-up here, or click/tap the logo.