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Netlify Build Plugin: Persist the Gatsby Cache Between Builds

Persist the Gatsby cache between Netlify builds for huge build speed improvements! ⚡️

Note: The functionality in this plugin is now available in the Essential Gatsby build plugin. Check out Essential Gatsby for additional framework-specific functionality on Netlify, including Gatsby Functions. If you choose to install it, you should remove this plugin first.


Currently, there are two ways to install this plugin on your application:

Installing from Netlify UI

One-click install to add this to your Gatsby site

Installing from your project's code

You can also install it manually using netlify.toml. If you want to know more about file-based configuration on Netlify, click here.

Add the following lines to your project's netlify.toml file:

  publish = "public"

  package = "netlify-plugin-gatsby-cache"

Note: The [[plugins]] line is required for each plugin, even if you have other plugins in your netlify.toml file already.

How does it work?

This plugin determines the location of your .cache folder by looking at the publish folder configured for Netlify deployment. This means that if your Gatsby site successfully deploys, it will be cached as well with no config required! 🎉

How much of a difference does this plugin make in build times?

Each Gatsby site is different, so build times vary widely between them, but one common slowdown in Gatsby builds is processing and transforming images. Gatsby is smart enough to check if these transformations have already been done and skip them, but in order to get that benefit in a build pipeline (e.g. Netlify) the public and .cache directories need to be preserved between builds. That’s what this plugin does!

No Cache Cache Savings
* 231 GraphQL queries
* 1,871 images
* 224 pages
293207ms (build log) 72835ms (build log) 75%
* 5 GraphQL queries
* No image processing
* 32 pages
22072ms (build log) 15543ms (build log) 30%

tl;dr: Repeat builds with lots of images will be much faster. With few or no images, the difference will be there, but it won’t be as pronounced.

Want to learn how to create your own Netlify Build Plugins?

Check out Sarah Drasner’s excellent tutorial!


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