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I understand that every time a visitor goes to a website, it triggers the PHP code that then demands system resources.

My situation is that I have many websites, some not used, just sitting there, and I am wondering if they are demanding anything from my server.

I know that there is wp-cron file, that is supposed to work only if there is some visitor to the site. But what about google bots, do they count ?

If not - then how come these sites backup would still work and send the file to my e-mail?

p.s: I feel like this question should be phrased as a ZEN question: "If a WordPress is on a server - and no one listens - did it load?"

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

It's not likely an unused site is using mach resources except for harddrive space. There may be something left in memory but on a typical server thats doubtfull.

google bots trigger the site exactly the same as a regular user except it doesnt load unnessasary files like javascript, css or images (except maybe for image search).

wp-cron I believe can be triggered using a cron job. I'm not sure if wordpress attemps to do this by default, It may vary depending on the server config.

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I'm pretty sure the googlebot DOES load CSS in order to check for things like "display: none" which hide content from 'normal' visitors –  Bobby Jack Sep 3 '10 at 14:54
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Unless some user or robot is accessing your server, the files will sit there inert, consuming nothing besides disk space. The web server needs some trigger to access those files, so even WordPress cron jobs won't run unless somebody visits your blog. That's why there exist instructions on triggering wp-cron manually, ie. through a system cron job.

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