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Does Your Site Need Both Akismet And SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam?

Does Your Site Need Both Akismet And SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam?

Things to think about to determine if your website needs both the Akismet WordPress Plugin and the SI Captcha Anti-Spam WordPress Plugin.

Each WordPress Plugin you add to your site, can potentially result in the performance of your website slowing down. This for all sort of reasons, including poorly written code. This means that your website has to do more work which takes some more time to process. This slows down the process of displaying content on your website. This of course is not what you want.

**Important Update**

Since this post was originally posted, the SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam WordPress Plugin has been removed from the WordPress repository of plugins.


I no longer use the Akismet WordPress Plugin or the SI Captcha Anti-Spam WordPress Plugin.

My understanding

  1. The Akismet WordPress Plugin has a potential overhead in performance.
  2. The SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam WordPress Plugin has a potential overhead in performance.
  3. All WordPress Plugins have a potential overhead in performance.

This potential overhead in performance means that it takes longer for your website to process a request from a reader and to get back to your reader. The request could be to display a web page. The web page needs to display content to the reader as quickly as possible, especially the bit ‘above the fold’, so that the reader can start reading the content. The bit ‘below the fold’ can be loading when the reader is already reading the content ‘above the fold’.

So if you are okay with your website taking longer than necessary to display content, and your readers are also okay with it, than yes, you do need both Akismet and SI CAPCHA Anti-Spam WordPress Plugins active.

However if you like me want your website to display as quickly as possible, you want to make any possible improvements, bearing in mind that you may need the underlying functionally of WordPress Plugins.

What this article discusses is not having both the Akismet and SI CAPCHA Anti-Spam WordPress Plugins active. One ‘has to go’ if possible.

First, I mention my current SI CAPTCHA anti-spam settings I used in case that this information helps you.

SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam Settings I Used

After you install this WordPress PlugIn, you want to ensure that you set it up to your liking and that it is correctly the way that you expect.

Go into your WordPress Dashboard, then select Plugins, then select Si Capcha options.

The following SI CAPTCHA settings may need to be looked at and amended if required. These are settings that are working for me, no reason why they will not work for you.

  • No Tick – Enable CAPCHA on the login form
  • Ticked – Enable CAPCHA on the register form
  • Ticked – Enable CAPCHA on the lost password form
  • Ticked – Enable CAPCHA on the comment form

Make sure you click “update options”.

Then log out of WordPress completely.

Then navigate to your site as a visitor would.

Then you should see it the same way as your visitors.

Make sure that the CAPTCHA functionally works in the way that you want.

If not, simply go back into your WordPress dashboard, and review and edit your SI CAPCHA settings accordingly.

Site taking more than 4 seconds to display?

If so, you have a problem. The word out there, is that your website needs to be displaying content to your readers as quickly as possible, with different people saying that it should take no more than 2 or 3 or 4 seconds. Any more time, and the reader may have moved on and may never visit your website. This is not good for you.

So I decided to review the WordPress Plugins I have enabled and see if there is any room for improvement.

Some WordPress plugins can be enabled, do what needs to be done, and then disabled if you are performing WordPress related tasks where this approach makes sense.

I have both the Akismet WordPress Plugin and the SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam Word Plugin installed and activated.

The real question is do I need both activated?

Both of them do almost the same job, in reducing the amount of spam that reaches my comments area within the WordPress Dashboard and also my email inbox. With both active, some spam comments may still reach my comments area within the WordPress Dashboard and also my email inbox.

I reviewed both the Akismet plugin and the SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam plugin.

I decided that I would see what happens if I disabled the Akisment plugin for the moment. The SI CAPCHA Anti-Spam plugin affects the comments areas within my website, so I decided for now to leave that alone.

Impact Akismet has on load speed time

A comment from one of my readers wondered what impact Akismet has on load speed time, so I did some testing. This is what I did.

I used a tool that Google have at:

I performed some testing with the WordPress Akismet Plugin enabled and with it disabled.

In my case, there was no difference in results. I assume that this is because Akismet is a WordPress plugin designed to help reduce the amount of comment related spam from reaching your inbox in the first place.

Other WordPress plugins are used when rendering content back to the user.

The other results it showed where interesting none the less. One of their recommendations is to avoid the use of plugins altogether, although I don’t think that they are specifically referring to WordPress plugins here.

I still think that the number of WordPress Plugins that are active on a website should be as low as it can be. A WordPress Plugin should only be enabled if it clear advantages.

Every time that WordPress is upgraded there is a possibility that a WordPress Plugin may not ‘play well’ with the upgraded version of WordPress.

Even if you do a lot of testing you may not discover any errors that users may discover. In my opinion, most users are not going to let you know about those errors as they have other things to be with their time. They simply jump off your site and go elsewhere.

Website Hosting Technology Moves On

This post was originally written in April 2015. Since then many webhosts have implemented additional functionally which means that the functionally provided by one or both of these WordPress Plugins may be handled by your webhost at the server level.

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Hi, I'm David, the senior editor and senior writer at Work From Home Notes covering products, apps, services, and work from home issues and trends. Prior to launching Work From Home Notes I was an IT professional for over twenty seven years. Now I work from home. Read more.