Trying to Decipher Website CPU Usage

For the past few days I’ve been receiving emails from my web host (DreamHost) alerting me of a problem with the amount of CPU usage on my shared hosting account. I’ve never had this happen before. The resources report shows that php5.cgi is using up 3548.7700 seconds of CPU time. Dreamhost tech support has advised me to optimize my php scripts to see if that helps. Unfortunately I have no idea what that might involve. I’m waiting to hear back from someone at DreamHost for a followup; but in the meantime, I thought I’d post my dilemna here. I’m not doing anything all that special on any of my websites: a few WordPress sites, a MovableType site and a Drupal site. I had PHP5 running on a couple sites (probably for no good reason other than clicking on the little checkbox on the web admin panel) and I’ve since unchecked that upgrade but I’m not sure if it reverted back to PHP4.x or not.

I’m stumped! Here’s a screenshot of the most recent resources report.

Update 12/20/05 @ 9:19 PM EST: DreamHost replied to my latest email asking for more help about this issue. This is what they had to say.

You received the email because your site does appear to be a bit busy.
You can safely disregard it for now, as it is only a warning. We will be overhauling this system, however, as it has caused a lot of confusion. You shouldn’t hear anymore on this subject unless there is a major problem and you are close to needing to be moved to the evaluation server.

If there is anything more we can help you with, please let us know and we will be more than happy to accommodate.


2 replies on “Trying to Decipher Website CPU Usage”

without seeing your log files, i’d suspect either an unpatched drupal with the xml-rpc vulnerability, or some templating problem in wordpress (or MT if you use dynamic templates). in any event, it might help to dial down the maxium execution time for your php scripts in php.ini.

Hey Gregor. Thanks for the tip! I’d be happy to show you the log files if you’re interested in checking it out for me. :) It’s really weird since I haven’t done anything special on any of my websites. The CPU usage problem started happening before my Drupal site was set up (a few days ago). Hmmm ….

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