How to speed up web servers and apache using DEFLATE.

We all want faster web pages, and there is a number of ways to achieve this.

One way is to use compression with apache. This means slightly more cpu overhead on the webserver, but should result in better performance of your webpages..

Here is a step by step guide to doing this on linux with apache > 2.0

In your httpd conf file under your location add in the following, this will compress everything except images:

<Location />
# Insert filter
SetOutputFilter DEFLATE

# Netscape 4.x has some problems...
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4 gzip-only-text/html

# Netscape 4.06-4.08 have some more problems
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4\.0[678] no-gzip

# MSIE masquerades as Netscape, but it is fine
# BrowserMatch \bMSIE !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html

# NOTE: Due to a bug in mod_setenvif up to Apache 2.0.48
# the above regex won't work. You can use the following
# workaround to get the desired effect:
BrowserMatch \bMSI[E] !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html

# Don't compress images
SetEnvIfNoCase Request_URI \
\.(?:gif|jpe?g|png)$ no-gzip dont-vary

# Make sure proxies don't deliver the wrong content
Header append Vary User-Agent env=!dont-vary
</Location>

Then enable compression by adding the following to your conf file:

SetOutputFilter DEFLATE

Restart or reload apache and you should now be compressing content..

For more info, see http://httpd.apache.org/docs/2.0/mod/mod_deflate.html

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