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Cloudflare is a company that provides content delivery network (CDN), DNS, DDoS protection and security services. They are very well known in the web performance industry for fast DNS lookup times and have a robust network of over 100 different data centers around the world. Backed by some of the biggest names in the industry, such as Google, Microsoft and Qualcomm, Cloudflare’s market share continues to grow. Their clients include Nasdaq, Digital Ocean, Zendesk and Cisco.
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If you’re looking for an easy way to speed up and increase security on your WordPress site, Cloudflare is a great solution. Most customers can even take advantage of their free plan, which offers unlimited CDN bandwidth. Follow the steps below to install Cloudflare on your WordPress site.
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Note: If you use Cloudflare, you cannot use our premium DNS from Amazon Route 53. Cloudflare works as a full proxy service, which means you can choose one or the other. If you want to use our premium DNS server, you can use alternative CDNs like KeyCDN, which is not a full proxy, to speed up your website.
Offers seamless Cloudflare integration for customers at no additional cost. To learn more, read our article on activating Cloudflare for an existing domain in My.
This tutorial assumes you already have a Cloudflare account. If not, you can visit the Cloudflare website and sign up for a free account.
Log in to your Cloudflare dashboard and click “+ Add site”. Enter the domain of your WordPress site and click “Start Scan”. (You don’t need to add www or HTTP/HTTPS, root domain is fine)
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Cloudflare gives you two options. You can use their CDN and Protection (which speeds up and protects your site) or you can simply use their DNS. Most customers want the former, as this is where you take advantage of all that Cloudflare has to offer. To make sure your domains are activated, make sure the cloud is orange. If you have other records, such as email (MX records), they should be disabled by Cloudflare (grey). After verifying everything, click continue. You can change these records at any time later.
On the next page you need to choose a Cloudflare plan. We recommend starting with the free plan, which will work for most users. Then click on “Continue”. You can read more about the differences in Cloudflare plans.
You then need to change the nameservers on your domain to point to Cloudflare (use the ones they provide). Because Cloudflare is a full proxy service, it basically works by pointing your domain to Cloudflare and Cloudflare then pointing your domain to . There is no interruption when changing the name server. Here are some links to documentation with various domain registrars on how to change them.
If your site was not already displayed, or you were using Premium DNS, you will need to update the A record to show it in the Cloudflare dashboard. Click on “DNS” and next to the A entry, change it to your IPv4 address. You can find your WordPress site’s IPv4 address on the My Dashboard page under the About Your Site tab. If you are not a customer, make sure you update them with the IP address of your WordPress host.
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For WordPress users, there is one more step that we recommend. It’s not required, but some things with Cloudflare may not work properly if you don’t install the official Cloudflare plugin.
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You can download it from the WordPress repository or search for it in the WordPress dashboard under “Add New” plugins. It has the following functions:
After installing the plugin, you need to enter your Cloudflare email address and API key in the settings. You can download the API key here. Copy the one that says “Global API Key”. Then click on “Save API Credentials”.
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In the “Settings” tab, you can enable image optimization if you’re on the Pro plan, enable development mode, change the security level, and enable automatic HTTPS rewrite.
In the “Analytics” tab, you can see the number of requests, bandwidth, visitors and threats on your WordPress site.
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A very common error that users see when trying to install Cloudflare on their WordPress site is “ERR_TOO_MANY_REDIRECTS” in Chrome or “The page is not being redirected correctly” (Firefox).
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This is because you have already set up SSL on your web server and then enabled Flexible SSL in Cloudflare. If you already have an SSL certificate with your web host (), you will want to switch the SSL mode to full.
Getting into trouble? There are times when you need to clear (clear) the Cloudflare cache. There are two easy ways to do this.
Another option is to clear Cloudflare’s cache from their control panel. To do this, click on the “Caching” tab and then “Clear everything”.
If everything works well, it is better to clear the cache only from individual files. Cloudflare offers an easy way to do this.
How To Install Cloudflare On Your WordPress Site
Note: If you delete everything, you may experience a temporary decrease in performance on your site because the assets need to be cached again. However, sometimes this is unavoidable, especially if you are not sure which script or element on your website needs to be restored.
Now that you know how to install Cloudflare, we recommend you check out our detailed post on the best settings for WordPress users. You can also check how much bandwidth your WordPress site uses compared to a CDN and learn about Cloudflare’s Automatic Platform Optimization (APO) tool.
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Acting as a reverse proxy in front of your site, Cloudflare is an all-in-one security and performance product used by over 12% of websites worldwide. As a WordPress user, adding Cloudflare to your website can help increase website performance and reduce the impact of malicious bots and hackers.
Once properly configured, all requests to your website first hit the Cloudflare server, which then determines whether the request is forwarded to the origin server, served from a cache, blocked, or processed using custom rules.
In this guide, we’ll take a deeper look at the optimal Cloudflare settings for WordPress, highlight the difference between DNS and Cloudflare DNS, talk about caching and security settings, and show you how to configure Cloudflare for WordPress multisite installations.
Note: If you are a customer, Edge Caching, as part of our Cloudflare integration, caches your website/page in one of Cloudflare’s global network of 275+ data centers.
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Edge Caching is included with all plans for free, requires no separate plugin, and reduces the time it takes for WordPress to serve cached HTML by over 50% on average!
Before we dive into the Cloudflare settings and how to properly tune them for your WordPress site, let’s go over the differences between DNS and Cloudflare DNS. DNS, the premium DNS service included in all our plans, is powered by Amazon Route53. Route53 is an enterprise-grade DNS service that provides fast and reliable resolution.
In terms of performance and availability, Cloudflare DNS and DNS are comparable – both are excellent services. The main difference between the two services is Cloudflare’s additional security and performance features. DNS is a pure DNS solution, while Cloudflare offers both DNS and an optional proxy layer that acts as a firewall, CDN, and more.
If you are a customer looking only for DNS service, DNS is the ideal choice. On the other hand, if you are looking for an all-in-one proxy-based product, Cloudflare is a good choice.
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Cloudflare offers a number of security and performance benefits, but not all of them are fully compatible with WordPress. Let’s take an in-depth look at Cloudflare’s settings to identify the best features for your WordPress site.
Customers who want to use Cloudflare on their WordPress site are advised to generate a free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate in My and use the Full or Full (Strict) option on Cloudflare.
Alternatively, you can also generate a native Cloudflare certificate and install it on your native server. If your host does not offer free SSL certificates, you can install a native Cloudflare certificate on your server, which allows you to use Full (Strict) SSL mode.
If you use to host the site on a subdomain while the root domain uses Cloudflare’s flexible SSL, you can use
How To Set Up Cloudflare For WordPress (step By Step Tutorial)
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