[webkit-gtk] dns prefetching knob

David Hill dhill at mindcry.org
Wed Mar 9 06:18:07 PST 2011

On Wed, Mar 09, 2011 at 09:10:16AM -0500, Dan Winship wrote:
> On 03/09/2011 07:55 AM, Marco Peereboom wrote:
> > For some reason
> > people are still attached to this relic of the modem era.  DNS prefetch
> > is optional in the HTTP spec and the time has come to admit that it no
> > longer serves a purpose.  Back in the day when modems were king and DNS
> > lookups were expensive you could save some time when a user clicked on a
> > link.  Times have changes and the web has evolved.
> Prefetch isn't mentioned in the HTTP spec at all. And I don't think
> anyone was doing it back in the modem age. AFAIK, Google started doing
> it with Chrome, and other people followed.

If it is not mentioned in the spec, I think it should be optionized
then, not hardcoded.  Google started doing it with Chrome, but was it a
performance booster, or (imo) a way to track users even more?

I have tested this patch and the performance boost is unbelievable.

I also disabled dns prefetching (as well as link prefetching) in
Firefox, and noticed a massive performance increase.

This patch needs to go in.  That, or remove DNS prefetching entirely,
but I prefer the former.

> It *does* help in some cases. Lots of sites have lame slow DNS servers
> (and lots of ISPs have lame slow recursive resolvers). We just don't
> want to try to pre-resolve every single link on the page.
> -- Dan
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