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Old 2017-04-26 , 17:51
Geoff D Geoff D is offline
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Default Forum and DSTV Evaluation Reports

I am not sure if this is the right place to discuss this but here goes.

I have just undertaken an evaluation of a few websites and though it would be interesting to report on some of the results here for the DSTV sites.

Generally, DSTV sites are no better or worse than most of the SA sites I have looked at recently. But having said that, our websites are really very poor when compared to World standards with quite a few rather serious security issues. This is what started me on this path in the first place.

So here goes.

The method I used was to employ the analysis method developed and made available by www.dareboost.com.

The Forum.

Now we know the forum sw is old, very old, and has not really been looked at seriously for a long time. In some ways, that has become a blessing in disguise because some of the newer exploits around have long since "moved on" to greener pastures!

The overall evaluation is scores 61% (Still not so far from the worst in the World), with 14 serious issues, 16 low hanging improvements that could be done quite easily and 60 successes where the forum scores 100%.

The speed index is 3168, making the forum rather slow to load (the recommended value a website should achieve is an index of 1000).
The site is only 8% HTTP/2 ready! it is a very low "weight site (239 kB) but this is probably because of the sw used, not because it is good.

The forum takes 6.5 seconds to fully load from London (Dareboost do not have a test server anywhere in SA).

The first byte takes 540ms to load. The Google recommendation is 200ms.
Starting to Render takes 2.97 seconds! the recommendation is it should start to display in less than 1 second.
Fully loaded is 6.60 seconds. Most users start to get agitated if a site takes more than 4 seconds to fully load.

There are quite a few security holes which could be exploited and quite a lot of unnecessary network traffic that causes us users of the forum to use up our capacity for no benefit.

All the sites I chose to test in SA show very similar results suggesting that we have a systemic issue at play here about how our website developers go about coding websites! i.e. Something is wrong with the skill levels and/or training or our developers are not keeping up with worldwide trends.

So this is the Good news. In the next post I will show the results for www.dstv.com, which are not at all good, and probably indicate why so many of the on line services dsTV provides are forever falling over and breaking.
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Old 2017-04-26 , 18:15
Geoff D Geoff D is offline
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DSTV.com

Overall score: 60%
15 serious issues
19 Improvements possible
64 100% scores
Page weight is 2.56MB. That is extremely high, costing as all plenty when we access the site in data usage.


The speed index is where things really go wrong. The value is 18751. That is one hellava long way from the recommended 1000.

First byte: 15.06 seconds (200ms)
Start to render 17.17 seconds (1 second)
Fully loaded 24.90 seconds (4 seconds)

14% HTTP/2 ready.

Plenty of security holes waiting to be exploited.
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  #3  
Old 2017-04-26 , 18:32
MCA CCS Natasha's Avatar
MCA CCS Natasha MCA CCS Natasha is offline
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Hi Geoff,

This is very interesting - thanks. I have sent this to the technical funds in our area - we will look into this and provide feedback some time next week!
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  #4  
Old 2017-04-27 , 09:44
Geoff D Geoff D is offline
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Of course the distance to the test server does pay a role in how fast the website and the forum loads, and should be factored out of some of the results. But for me to be able to do that would require a much deeper analysis of the results which is not available without subscribing to the services on the site.

If for example we were to take off say 200ms off the first byte result for the forum, then the figures would be 340 ms, which is quite good, but it does not explain why the forum is slow to start and complete.

Both the forum and DSTV.com also did not show up any significant browser specific issues which is good.
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