Often, websites need to run routine tasks, like a scheduled backup, submit orders for processing, or fire off an email for certain reason.
In order to process those tasks, a system called a "cron" is used that requests a specific URL that fires off the tasks. However, with WordPress, by default the URL that runs scheduled tasks is only activated once someone visits the site manually. Each time someone visits the site, a request is sent to a url called "/wp-cron.php" to tell the web server to perform the scheduled tasks, but if that hasn't been accessed for awhile (such as on a low traffic site) there can be backlog of tasks.
This causes two problems.
1.) The wp-cron is inconsistent, resulting in overdue processes.
2.) The wp-cron can end up needing to perform lots of tasks all at once that can stress the server resources compared to running lighter work loads over time.
Not to mention, running the wp-cron on each and every single page load whether it's needed or not, can be resource intensive itself and slow up the site.
Instead, to improve reliability, decrease resource stresses, and improve website speed, you should change your WordPress website to run cron jobs directly via the server.
This way, instead of crons loading on each page load, the server itself pings the URL at a specific interval (such as 5 minutes) and performs the tasks.
To change to a cron job, begin by activating a cron job from within your web hosting panel.
You'll want to add a cron command of:
wget -q -O - https://yoursite.com/wp-cron.php?doing_wp_cron >/dev/null 2>&1
Then, use the File Manager to open the wp-config.php file and add above the line that says /* That's all, stop editing! Happy publishing. */:
Congrats, your WordPress site will run faster and have more consistency with running tasks on time.
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