I have a site with about 900 pages that I was using custom permalinks /%year%/%monthnum%/%postname%/ for. I have a custom nav menu with tons of items in it. This combination seems to be simply too much for the server and they keep suspending my account for CPU usage. (I'm pretty sure this is what's causing the problem; I've already ruled out plugin issues).

I've decided to change the permalink structure back to default, but it doesn't automatically change the nav menu. So I'm looking at hours of extra work rebuilding the menu after the permalink change. (I originally attempted to make the fix with sql queries, but I can't figure out the nav_menus are put together by WP).

Does anyone have a fix for this, a plugin that does it, or a method to do it quickly, or any help at all?

The site is http://cumberlandmaine.com

1 Answer 1


Changing the permalink structure back won't reduce your CPU usage that much. That stuff happens on the Apache side of things (using mod_rewrite), and it's pretty fast. It might help a bit, but it's a HUGE pain if you have nice, readable, search-engine friendly URLs at the moment.

One of the best ways to reduce CPU usage is to implement caching. If you're getting WordPress to serve static content instead of having the content fetched from the DB and processed every time, you're saving a lot of resources. The two most popular caching plugins are http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-super-cache/ and http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/w3-total-cache/ right now. I personally use WP Super Cache, but there are good reasons to look at W3 Total Cache. Depending on the setup, one might end up being a lot better than the other for you.

EDIT: I looked at your site as well... It's being served very slowly from your host. This might be because of a lot of plugins, or some less-then-optimal custom code -- but I think it might also be a good idea to look at what other hosting providers could offer you. I use MediaTemple and I love them. However, I also only host one WordPress site per shared hosting instance, and pass the hosting costs on to my clients. I find this to be a better option for something like WordPress which is pretty resource intensive on a site with even moderate traffic.

  • Thanks for your great answer. What do you think of Wordpress' custom_nav_menus ? I have been having a hunch that they are really slow (especially the huge one on the left), but maybe you think I'm off track on that guess too?
    – JakeParis
    Mar 26, 2011 at 21:30
  • I looked at wp-super-cache, but it actually made things worse, and it seemed like it had something to do with shared hosting (WebHostingBuzz). So I'm moving to DreamHost on a VPS. But I've really never had any problem like this with any other WP site I've created...
    – JakeParis
    Mar 26, 2011 at 21:32
  • wp-super-cache made things worse? Seriously? I don't know how that could be possible. Also, I don't think custom_nav_menus could really affect performance that much. I'm happy you're looking into other hosting options (I've never heard of WebHostingBuzz(, but I don't know much about Dreamhost. I would assume DreamHost is reasonable because of the amount of people hosting there, but I can't promise anything. Again: MediaTemple is excellent. I've only have a great experience with them. Mar 26, 2011 at 22:12

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