Ruby on Rails, which is popularly called Rails, is an open-source server-side web application framework. Rails as a framework uses all popular web standards such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, JSON and XML etc. In other words, Ruby on Rails is an almighty tool for all sorts of web development. Seamless database creation and migration with web apps makes Rails a great tool for any kind of web app. Ruby on Rails has made a great impact on app development since day one and the same heritage has continued since then. Even the more popular web and mobile app development frameworks, like NodeJs, borrowed from the basic idea of Rails to begin with. They continue to be influenced by Rails’ cutting edge innovations. As a developer, I understand how essential Rails have been to our profession. But there may arise some unnecessary situations where the performance of Ruby on Rails development may feel on the lower side. So, for the sake of better productivity it is important to boost the Ruby on Rails development performance.

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First of all, Ruby on Rails hasn’t been in the list of fastest frameworks. And then since Ruby on Rails is in continued development and like any other open-source tool, it always will be. Every update brings new features and also new bugs to the core making the Rails development even slower.

In this article, I will discuss how you can improve the performance of the development process by optimizing both backend and frontend.

Do not expect high performance

Ruby is not the fastest programming tool, so don’t wish Ruby on Rails to be among the fastest of the lot. Always remember that you were not going to get the best to speed with. So just temper your expectations and then try to get the classic hundred milliseconds turnaround at least.

Do Database Indexing

While database indexing itself is a slow operation, it boosts your web app by making data-fetching easier and faster.

Solve N+1 query performance problem by Eager Loading

N+1 query performance problem is caused by poor use of child objects in Ruby on Rails programs. You can use Eager Loading to solve this performance problem.

Eager loading is the exact opposite of lazy loading in web applications.

Learn more about the difference here.

Use 80-20 rule

80-20 rule is also known as the Pareto principle. 80% of the work is completed 20% of the hard work. What I mean to say is that you should not spend your time on little things but rather focus on the bigger problems. This will improve your workflow and also help complete the projects quickly.

Thin Controller and Fat Model

Make sure to limit the amount of data and make controllers as light and thin as possible. Controllers with limited data will have an upper hand in performance and the model you’ll render in the end will be worth working upon.

Selection of correct session storage

In Ruby on Rails, various session storage options are available depending upon your programs’ needs. You can either choose to store all data on the client (CookieStore), on DRb server (DRbStore), in MemCache (MemCacheStore) and in a database using Active Record (ActiveRecordStore).

App Cache

Caching is possibly the best way to improve the performance of a Ruby on Rails application. There are dozens of ways you can allow app cache on the client devices as well as on the server, including asset cache, page cache, OPcache, fragment cache, SQL cache, and action cache.

Make use of Content Delivery Networks

Content Delivery Network or a CDN is a great way to boost any web app. CDN boosts app performance by caching up static files on cloud servers located in different datacenters and then service those to users from the nearest datacenter. The use of CDN makes content delivery fast and that results in a way faster app performance.

Minification and compression of files

Last but not least – you can improve your Ruby on Rails app performance by minimizing scripts and compressing files. This will result in way faster load time and speed, improving both the development and delivery of the application.

Let me know if you have any other suggestions on how to improve the Ruby on Rails development performance. Write your suggestions and ideas about this in the comment box.


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