Best way to test how much traffic your droplet can handle?

Posted March 2, 2015 17.6k views

Last night I installed a 1GB Droplet with discourse with a 2GB swap following the DO guide using docker on ubuntu 14.04 64 bit.

I ran a few tests on running 5,000 clients in a minute, it came back with about a 48% failure rate, around that number. Had 2700 Successes and 2300 400/500 page errors. I was using Cloudflare for my DNS, with DO.

I ran a few tests today on for another domain I have done through bluehost and got a success rate of 100% running 10,000 clients in one minute. Again, this is a website hosted through bluehost. This is the website

Granted, I don’t believe my discourse community will receiver 5,000 clients in a minute, I’m new to Digital Ocean and using a Cloud Server, and would like to be able to ball park and make sure my community always stays up and running. The most users i’ve ever had online at the same time in the past 7 years is 1,200, probably not counting annonymous users. But even when I chose to have 1,000 clients in one minute, I was still getting some unsuccessors.

EDIT: I recognized there was a redirect issue with my website on bluehost, making every client pass. I Just ran a test with 1,000 clients in one minute with 100% error rate, will update again after making some caching changes.

EDIT: Activated Cloudflare on bluehost, 100 clients per minute passes, 200 clients over one minute gets a miserable 52% fail rate.. does this mean my website cannot handle this much traffic??

Please help.

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  • EDIT: Activated WP-Super Cache on Bluehost website. 0% failure rate for 200 clients over one minute, 0% failure rate for 300 clients, 500 clients over one minute with 373 success rates and 0% failure, 1000 clients currently testing with a 0% error rate. 782 successes

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What you need is a cache like varnish or nginx, or both, Cloudflare helps a lot, but in a stress test it may be blocking some requests if they are originated from same ip addresses. Try direct testing your site without cloudflare (turn the orange cloud off) and see the results. While plugin cache helps a lot, is a lot better to rely on real cache solutions like varnish and nginx.

With 1GB droplet you can easily handle 1000+ users if you have some caching solution, Also use a CDN (Nginx is great to make your own) for static files.

  • What I am looking to do is have a website on wordpress ( and a discourse community on ( But I want these on the same droplet if possible.
    The reason I am messing around with all of my settings on bluehost with cloudflare is because that is where my wordpress blog resides.

    I’m still working out the kinks for discourse, but I just want to make sure I am able to handle at least 1,000-2,000 users.

    I’m not exactly sure how to install nginx alongside discourse with Docker.

  • I think it can handle it, but you will need some caching. and yeah you can have both sites or even more on same droplet. not sure how to use it with a Docker, but I guess any tutorial should work. Also there is that can help you with nginx/varnish installation and management.

    Discourse is required to be used with a Docker or there is any good reason you want to use a Docker?

  • I believe it is required with docker. It is the recommended according to their installation guides, and it’s the only thing they support as of now I believe, I could be wrong. I’m just new to DO and being on the command line for that matter. Haven’t done it since college.

  • Well maybe you can check if it requires docker, if no maybe you can try it makes things easier, also (just guessing) you may can run a ubuntu instance in your docker and try serverpilot and Discourse. Also there is to help manage dockers.

    Again I’m just guessing, never tried docker, but I should soon.

  • According to discourse:

    Docker is the only supported, but it isn’t required.

  • Cool, then skyp docker, I think is not like you are getting too much of a use for it.