About caching in Acquia Cloud Site Factory

To improve your website's performance, Acquia Cloud Site Factory caches several files and webpages that make up your website using both Drupal caching (used directly by your website) and Varnish caching (top-level cache used to increase general performance).

When a visitor views your website, if the webpage they request was previously served to a different visitor and is in a cache, Acquia Cloud Site Factory provides the webpage directly from the cache. This allows the visitor to see the page several times faster than if Acquia Cloud Site Factory had to prepare and send the page to the visitor from its source files. Because pages are served faster, caching enables more pages to be served to more visitors.

Acquia Cloud Site Factory caches the following data types relating to your website's structure:

  • Drupal website databases
  • Anonymous webpages and static content
  • CSS files
  • JavaScript files

Clearing the caches

Acquia Cloud Site Factory allows you to clear your websites' Drupal and Varnish caches, which causes any visitor requested webpages and files to be regenerated from the source files. Newly requested visitor items will then be placed in the cache for use with future visitors.

Clearing caches also refreshes the thumbnail images of your websites on the Factory interface, site collections, and groups webpages.

To clear your website's Varnish and Drupal caches, you can use the Acquia Cloud Site Factory user interface, the Site Factory API, or a specially-formatted command from the command-line interface:

  • Clearing caches through the user interface
    To clear your website's caches (including Varnish caches) with the Site Factory Management Console interface, complete the following steps:
    1. Sign in to the Site Factory Management Console, find the website for which you want to clear its caches, and then open its actions menu.

      Site actions menu

    2. Click Clear caches.
    3. To confirm that you want to clear the website's caches, click Clear caches.
  • Clearing caches with the Site Factory API
    The Site Factory REST API includes a cache-clear endpoint for clearing a website's Drupal and Varnish caches programmatically.
  • Clearing a single page from cache using the command line
    For instructions about how to clear a single webpage with the command line, see Manually purging a page from Varnish cache.

Increasing the cache lifetime

By default, Acquia Cloud Site Factory sets the maximum age for items included in the Varnish page cache (page_cache_maximum_age) to 3600 seconds (60 minutes). See Increasing caching in Acquia Cloud Site Factory for several methods of increasing the cache lifetime value from the default.

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