Limiting the number of post or page revisions can help the responsiveness of a WordPress website. A small change to a WordPress configuration file can improve your website.
Editing a WordPress post I tend to save frequently: enabling me to see the changes within the context of the website and just to be sure, in case something should happen and I lose the edits which I have made.
With each save my list of revisions grows. Realistically its only the latter ones which I am interested in. Its doubtful that one of the older entries will have the missing paragraph of text.
If I can reduce the long list of revisions on the page then so much the better. Its distracting and makes the page longer, with a large block to scroll past.
I am also aware that all of these revisions is making for a larger database. The impact will be two fold:
- A larger memory footprint will make it less likely that the database will sit wholly in memory, making processing slower.
- More entries in the database will affect the speed that the database server returns a particular post entry.
The limiting of the number of revisions are turned off by default.
There are plugins available which allow the revisions to be managed, either by offering a table of entries for deletion or by restricting the quantity per post by date or quantity.
A simple edit of the wp-config.php file, in the root of the website, will allow the number of revisions to be retained, per post, to be set.
The entry to be added to the wp-config.php file is
define( ‘WP_POST_REVISIONS’, 10 );
To be effective the entry must be located before the entry
require_once(ABSPATH . ‘wp-settings.php’);
The change to the file may be made either through the host control panel for the website or via FTP.
I made the change to the file, edited a post in development and the number of revisions available was now reduced to 5:
Revisions: 5+ Browse
Changes to the revisions retained are updated when an entry is edited.Old posts will retain their existing quantity of revisions.