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What is Railgun and How to Enable Railgun For Your Account

In this article, we will discuss Railgun, Cloudflare’s most advanced caching mechanism for dynamic contents that increase website performance. Before we go ahead, click here to know more about Cloudflare and the benefits it can bring to your website.

What is Railgun?

Nearly, 70% of a website page contains cacheable or static content like baseline HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and images. The other 30% will be dynamically generated, non-cacheable content and most probably the ones that are downloaded first. By enabling basic Cloudflare service in the cPanel, the performance for static cacheable content will be improved by serving the cache from a data center that is physically closest to the person browsing the website, but not for the dynamic parts.

Railgun was developed to enhance the later part. Railgun uses a new caching mechanism based on comparing page versions to determine what needs to be transmitted across the Internet. It ensures that the connection between the origin server and the Cloudflare network is as fast as possible. Railgun compresses previously uncacheable web objects up to 99.6% and thus results in an average of 200% additional performance increase. All the requests are handled through the encrypted, binary Railgun protocol.

In simple words, a website’s HTML markup will not be changed completely on each request. So instead of transferring the complete markup, Railgun only transfers the changed markup parts, thus reduces the bandwidth usage and overall page load times.

We have partnered with Cloudflare so our shared/reseller customers can enable Railgun worth $200/month free of cost.

Enabling Railgun

In order to use Railgun, make sure that you are using our nameservers for the domain and then enable Cloudflare in the cPanel. For enabling Cloudflare, Click the Cloudflare icon under the Software section.

Cloudflare icon under the software section in the cPanel

Cloudflare icon under the software section in the cPanel

In the next page, you will be asked to create a free account with Cloudflare or log into an existing one.

Cloudflare landing page

Cloudflare landing page

Once logged in, go to the Domains option of the top menu and enable Cloudflare for the domain you wish. Once added, the website will start routing through Cloudflare infrastructure. This enables caching at the edge points and security features including DDOS protection etc. Click on the domain name to see the Cloudflare settings of each domain.

Cloudflare domain settings page

Cloudflare domain settings page

To enable Railgun, scroll down to the bottom of the settings to see the option for Railgun.

Enable CloudFlare Railgun

Enable Railgun

To enable it, just toggle the option from Off to On. Once it’s set, the website will start using Cloudflare’s Railgun service for caching dynamic contents. Please allow a couple of hours for the changes to take effect and then check the website. You will see a definite improvement in the website’s page load times.

Note: It may take 24 hours to get the Railgun option to be enabled for the newly added domain to the Cloudflare.

Conclusion

Congrats! Now, you’ve successfully enabled Railgun For Your Account.

If the steps above listed in this article do not resolve your issue, please feel free to open a support ticket and we’d be happy to take a look.

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