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A 35-50kB HTML document on many Stack Exchange website pages including Stack Overflow is taking 10+ seconds to load. Please see screenshots for evidence. Please note that the issue is intermittent. Same page could load fast or slow on repeated attempts to load it.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

The last screenshot is of a Wiki Page. Its document size is 10x times higher than what Stack websites are loading but its loading time is very fast.

I'm on a 40Mbps fiber plan. My laptop is connected to my router via Wifi. I am not using a Proxy or a VPN. I usually get full speed if I try to download or stream something. I have no latency issues on myriads of other websites I visit on a daily basis including media rich websites such as YouTube.

DNS resolution does not seem to be an issue either. Doing a ping on Meta SE shows latency below 5ms in general, and using drill command on Meta SE returned DNS records within 3ms-100ms. Using traceroute with TCP packets shows that my machine can reach Meta SE, SO and cdn.sstatic.net within 11ms easily.

Stack Exchange websites are loading slow on both of my fully updated browsers: Firefox Developer Edition (110.0b9) and Chromium (110.0.5481.77) running on a fully updated Arch Linux OS. And yes, I did restart my machine and my router too. The problem persists.

I have tested the problem on Guest Mode of Chromium as well as on a new profile on Firefox to rule out ad-blocking and extension related issues. In general, loading time was slower most of the time in Firefox as compared to Chromium where some pages loaded fast as usual and then suddenly slow loading issue would popup there too.

And I have this problem on my Firefox for Android too by the way.

I have been facing this problem for about 4-5 days. I thought it would resolve if others might be having this issue because some of them would report it on Meta SE. Apparently other users seem to not have this problem. Suggestions on SU for this kind of problem did not help either.

So, how do I make SE websites load fast, or at least as fast as they used to load a couple of days ago?


Edit 1:

Tried on a 4G network. Same problem.

Traceroute was below 60ms. Ping was below 65ms in general. Here are a couple of screenshots.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

Because 4G is slower than my broadband that wiki page also shows higher latency. But even than that fat wiki page loads alright, but SE sites don't.


Edit 2:

Links to redacted HAR files when the issue occurred. One was tested on a 4G network (hotspot) and the other on broadband (wifi). See 4G HAR and Broadband HAR.

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    I've also noticed slowdowns (in an Android browser) over the last few days, although it currently seems ok. I assumed it was just the ongoing DDOS attacks. meta.stackexchange.com/q/376060/334566
    – PM 2Ring
    Feb 8, 2023 at 18:49
  • @PM2Ring Hi. Do you have an updated Q&A on DDoS? That linked question is 8 months old with no activity. That's why I don't wanna conclude my issue to be an effect of DDoS. I don't see any recent DDoS related Q&A on Meta active page either.
    – 286110
    Feb 8, 2023 at 19:04
  • Sorry, no. The most recent report is from last August: Recent site instability, major outages – July/August 2022 Maybe we should ask Josh for an update...
    – PM 2Ring
    Feb 8, 2023 at 19:16
  • From the HAR is becomes clear that the call to clc.stackoverflow.com/stalled.gif?e=1 takes 9 seconds. Now from inspecting the initiator it looks like that gets called because the the Google Ad stuff that is loaded in the page throws an exception for one way or the other.
    – rene
    Feb 9, 2023 at 18:23
  • @rene it is not always the case that clc is the cause. In those HAR files sure I did see the delay when it happened there. But at other times when latency issue occurred the clc request resolved within milliseconds. Today, this problem arose I think once or twice so I cannot give any further HAR info.
    – 286110
    Feb 9, 2023 at 20:29

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