Wordfence for WordPress, one of the best security plugins which also had a cache functionality, just announced it will remove their cache Falcon engine. On of the biggest advantages (integrated performance optimization) of Wordfence will be disabled. I’ve used it on many sites. Now tested several plugin options to replace it fast and without much trouble. But first disable Falcon which is in Optimization settings of Wordfence. It will be discontinued soon anyway.
Of cause there is always an option to use W3 Total Cache plugin, but it’s too big and complex for smaller and medium sites. W3 Total includes minification engine, but often does it with too many errors. So for such sites I like to use excellent and flexible Autoptimize minification plugin.
I’ve ran several tests with different cache plugins in order to achieve the same as Wordfence Falcon or better speed for several sites that had Wordfence performance optimization turned on before. Plugins tested were HyperCache, Gator Cache, WP Fastest Cache and Comet Cache. I liked them for easiness of setup and options, good ratings on wordpress.org and my previous experience with some of them. Few years ago I really liked Hypercache, but it’s rarely updated + got some problems with it on Woocommerce sites. Gator was promising, as it has Autoptimize plugin compatibility, but something didn’t work in the setup and wasn’t able to make it work.
Cache Plugins to Use
After many tests with Google’s PageSpeed Insight I decided to use Comet plugin (previously known as ZenCache) for sites that already have Autoptimize plugin installed and set up. Results were similar to Falcon engine by Wordfence.
For sites that didn’t have Autoptimize plugin set up, I recommend to use WP Fastest Cache plugin, because its free version includes also basic minification engine, that usually doesn’t cause any errors at all. Its paid version has better minification options, but if you have time to setup Autoptimize for minification it will probably be better and also free of charge. Then use it with Comet, as proposed earlier. Or buy a premium version of Comet or WP Fastest Cache, they both has minification too.
For now replacements are performing nicely. Will update this post in case of some problems found. Need also more tests with stores that use Woocommerce. I previously had some problems with such plugins on shopping websites. But W3 Total plugin is advisable for web stores that use Woocommerce. If minification doesn’t work well, you could always add Autoptimize to it. Good luck.