Enable gzip compression using the .htaccess file for Apache
You can actually use two different Apache mods to enable HTTP gzip compression: mod_gzip and mod_deflate. Mod_gzip enables gzip compression and mod_deflate makes it possible to compress the output from your server before it is being sent to your visitor (which is the same thing). So should you be compressing your resources with gzip or deflate? In the end it doesn’t matter much, both modules will provide you with the same maximum gzip compression possible. But, as a general rule it is recommended to use mod_deflate since it’s more widely supported as mod_gzip. Mod_deflate is also better documented and easier to configure. If mod_deflate doesn’t work on your server you can still use mod_gzip. Not every host has these modules enabled on their servers, so make sure you ask your host about this when the below .htaccess scripts do not work. Add one of the below scripts to your .htaccess file (which can be found or should be placed in the root folder of your website (usually /var/www/html)):
To enable mod_deflate (recommended):
To enable mod_gzip (second back up choice):
When you just want to compress certain components or a certain file type with gzip make sure you include the file type to one of the above lists. And again, make sure at least one of the mods are enabled on the server where your website is hosted. If you don’t want to compress a certain file type, just remove the associated file type from the code.
Enable gzip compression for nginx
Edit your nginx.conf file or create a new config file called /etc/nginx/conf.d/static_gzip.conf:
$ sudo vi /etc/nginx/nginx.conf
Add the following in http context:
Save and close the file. Verify that there are no errors in config file:
$ sudo nginx -t
Restart the nginx server
$ sudo systemctl restart nginx
Gzip on Windows Servers (IIS Manager)
When your site is hosted on a Windows server you can enable compression for both static and dynamic files. It’s fairly easy to set this up in the IIS manager:
- Open up IIS Manager
- Click on the site you want to enable compression for
- Click on Compression (under IIS)
- Now Enable static compression and you are done!
When you can’t get it working visit Microsoft’s guide on this subject to learn how you can set it up.