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How do CPU resources work with WPX?

If you’ve been with us, since the day we started, you’ve so far gone through no less than 2 separate, unannounced performance upgrades, as we regularly upgrade our servers, using always the latest generation of processors.

Based on a sample of about 50,000 websites, our Network Admins recently determined that on average, about 80% consume less than 5% of our CPU allocation.

This means that most of you can enjoy up to 20X your usual traffic load without anyone noticing a delay in performance or without you having to pay over-usage fees.

What is CPU?

The CPU (Central Processing Unit) is the brain of your server. The more CPU units it has, the faster and more capable of processing a larger volume of requests it is.

How do Most Shared Hosts Track CPU Usage?

Most shared hosting providers allocate a certain number of CPU minutes per period, which is a significant component of every plan.

CPU time tracking is simple to set up. It can be measured objectively, and this creates the illusion that it is fair.

For example, if your hosting plan comes with a 30 CPU minutes daily allowance and 1 CPU core, this means that it can:

  • Run at 100% CPU load for 30 minutes, or
  • Run at 50% CPU load for 60 minutes, or
  • Run at 5% CPU load for 10 hours, or
  • Run at ~1.2% CPU load to make it through the day without being blocked for resource over-usage.

This approach to CPU resource monitoring works against everything that makes a web hosting service usable. It will punish you the moment your small website faces a growth opportunity.

Imagine that Robert Downey Jr. tweets a link to your recent fitness & wellness blog article. The merciless algorithm will let the first several hundred visitors through and then snap its imaginary fingers. Your website will disappear, and subsequent RDJ’s followers will only see a server error message.

Your once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shine will be gone, wasted.

While the example above is imaginary and made at least somewhat in jest, this is the reality of hosting your website on low-quality web hosts.

Let’s say you’re migrating your website to a lower-quality host, and you’re stressed out about making everything work properly – links, images, texts, etc then it is most likely, that you or your migration team will skip moving cropped/resized copies of images and exclude all sorts of locally cached data from the migration. This means that all image thumbnails and resized copies, as well as the components of the local cache, have to be regenerated, which is a CPU and I/O-heavy job.

Usually, that would hit the CPU minute usage monitor, and the website would begin loading at a snail’s pace — even though the hosting server itself might be otherwise sitting idle in the middle of the night between Saturday and Sunday!

This slow pace would slow the whole migration process down; all because of the overly simplistic way that 3rd party hosting enforces the ‘fair’ usage limits upon its customers.

How does WPX track your CPU usage?

Here at WPX, we’ve made every conceivable effort to protect our customers from such an unfortunate turn of events. Our resource monitoring system does keep constant track of CPU utilization per account to prevent abuse of the service, but it will NOT limit usage based on this metric alone.

Occasional short peaks of maxed-out ‘instant’ CPU load are perfectly normal. Most websites hosted on WPX will have a very liberal performance cushion that can absorb traffic spikes that are between 5X and 20X higher than their normal traffic level.

This means that in those delightful moments when Iron Man shares a link to your website, it will be able to withstand many times the normal traffic without exceeding any limitation of your hosting plan. Such limitations simply do not exist.

If this ‘instant’ CPU load stays too high for too long, then — and only then — will WPX interfere.

The monitoring system samples CPU usage once per second, per user. If CPU usage remains too high for 24 hours, this will trigger a fair use policy violation.

Our Security and Optimization team will start investigating what is causing the high load and assess further actions.

Oftentimes, it is something simple that our Security and Optimization team can fix alone (enabling the local cache and turning the WPX CDN can do wonders for performance).

Other times, the issue will be more involved. In this case, WPX will contact you for further insight.

What is the WPX CPU Usage Limit?

CPU consumption limits per plan in WPX are as follows:

  • Business Plan users will have access to a single CPU core.
  • Professional Plan users will see their usage limit of 2 CPU cores.
  • Elite Plan users will see their usage limit of 3 CPU cores.

Additionally, unlike many other hosting providers, we won’t stop your site if it exceeds its allocated CPU resources. Instead, we work with you to find a solution that optimizes your website’s performance without compromising its availability to your visitors. With WPX, you can trust that your website will have the resources it needs to deliver a fast, reliable user experience without interruption. So if you’re looking for a hosting provider that prioritizes CPU resources and puts your website’s performance first, look no further than WPX.

If you have any other questions on the topic, don’t hesitate to contact the WPX Support Team via live chat (use the bottom right-hand widget) and they will respond and help within 30 seconds or less.

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