Remove static resources query strings

List of errors

Query strings are unnecessary for static files like JS and CSS because they do not process the parameters passed to them. WordPress put them there so that when you update WordPress version the old file will not be cached and you immediately get the updated version.

To find out if your site is suffering from unnecessary query strings from static resources. Go have your site test out at pingdom. From the test, my default WordPress theme is having a bad score of “E”.

remove static resources query strings
A list of static resources query strings errors.

 Remove static resources query strings

There is WordPress plugin to fix this but I dislike the fact that there are so many badly written plugins that will damage my WordPress site. Therefore I prefer to fix it the PHP way.

To fix it, go to the functions.php file within the folder of your theme and add the following codes at the end of the file. What the codes do is that it is splitting the URL using “?” as the delimiter and then choose the first part of it.

function _remove_script_version( $src ){
$parts = explode( '?', $src );
return $parts[0];
}
add_filter( 'script_loader_src', '_remove_script_version', 15, 1 );
add_filter( 'style_loader_src', '_remove_script_version', 15, 1 );

Successfully fixed

Once fixed, have your site retested again. It should now have a score of “A”.

remove static resources query strings
Reran the test after fixing it.

Setup Cloudflare flexible SSL

Setup Cloudflare flexible SSL

In order to setup Cloudflare flexible SSL for your WordPress site, you’ll need to move your domain name server to Cloudflare. Login to your Cloudflare, at the top menu, choose crypto, then change SSL settings to flexible.

At the top menu, choose page rules. Add a page rule to always use HTTPS for http://www.oofnivek.com/*

Take note that the URL is HTTP and not HTTPS. This is because my web server is actually serving pages using HTTP and not https. Cloudflare is the one serving my pages using https acting like a proxy between you and my server.

setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Set the SSL settings to flexible
setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Add a page rule to my site.

Install WordPress plugin

Other than the configuration in Cloudflare, we need to install WordPress HTTPS (SSL) plugin. Without this plugin, loading the page will cause mixed content error and warnings. Once installed and activated, set the value for “proxy” to yes. If properly configured, it should show secure now next to the address bar.

setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Install the WordPress HTTPS (SSL) plugin.
setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Mixed content error and warning without the plugin.
setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Set proxy settings to “yes”.
setup cloudflare flexible ssl
Properly configured flexible SSL.

Ubuntu install WordPress

Install Apache

I assume you had already installed Apache into your Ubuntu elastic compute cloud ( EC2 ) instance. If you had not, then read my test Cloudflare DNS blog post, I had written about installing Apache. The entire guide below is using Ubuntu 16.04.

Configure Rewrite Module

This step is optional if you do not mind seeing “index.php” with query strings suffix after it. To remove it, you’ll need to configure the rewrite module in Apache. Go to /etc/apache2/sites-available/ and edit the file 000-default.conf and add the following codes in between the “VirtualHost” tag. After that type in the following commands to enable rewrite module.

<Directory /var/www/html>
    Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
    AllowOverride All
    Require all granted
</Directory>
sudo a2enmod rewrite
sudo service apache2 restart
ubuntu install wordpress
A sample rewrite module configuration.

Install MySQL server

To install MySQL server, type in the following commands in your Ubuntu terminal. During installation, it will prompt you for the root password. Type in your desired root password and repeat the same password in the next screen.

Next type in mysql_secure_installation. You will be prompted with a series of questions, you can answer accordingly as per my example. Create a database for WordPress use with the commands below. In my example, my database root user password is “password”. Replace the password with the password you entered earlier when you install MySQL server.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install mysql-server -y
ubuntu install wordpress
MySQL server installation prompting for “root” password.
ubuntu install wordpress
MySQL server installation prompting for root password confirmation.
mysql_secure_installation

Would you like to setup VALIDATE PASSWORD plugin? : n
Change the password for root ? : n
Remove anonymous users? : y
Disallow root login remotely? : y
Remove test database and access to it? : y
Reload privilege tables now? : y

mysql -uroot -ppassword -e 'create database wordpress'

Creating a database for WordPress by executing the MySQL statement with your password reveal in plain text will cause a warning. To suppress Bash MySQL warning you will need to store the password in the encrypted “.mylogin.cnf” file.

ubuntu install wordpress
A series of questions asked during mysql_secure_installation

Install PHP

To install PHP, type in the following commands. Once completed, to test if you had successfully installed PHP, open your web browser and go to “http://54.236.21.17/info.php”. Your IP address will be different from mine, replace the IP address with yours.

If you are unsure of your IP address, you can type in the curl command below to check. Make sure that you configure security group to allow inbound HTTP traffic.

sudo apt-get install php php-mysql libapache2-mod-php php-curl -y
echo '<?php phpinfo(); ?>' | sudo tee -a /var/www/html/info.php
curl checkip.amazonaws.com

ubuntu install wordpress

Ubuntu Install WordPress

To install WordPress, type in the following commands. Once completed, go to “http://54.236.21.17/index.php”. Your IP address will be different from mine, replace the IP address with yours. You should see the WordPress setup config page. Follow through the setup wizard to complete the WordPress setup.

cd /tmp/
wget https://wordpress.org/latest.tar.gz
tar -xzvf latest.tar.gz
cd /tmp/wordpress/
sudo mv * /var/www/html/
sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/html/
sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www/html/

ubuntu install wordpress
Choose your WordPress language.

ubuntu install wordpress

ubuntu install wordpress
In my example, my username is “root” and my password is “password”

ubuntu install wordpress

ubuntu install wordpress

ubuntu install wordpress

ubuntu install wordpress

ubuntu install wordpress
You have successfully completed WordPress setup once you see this WordPress admin dashboard.