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I'm looking for an online service that can measure the load time of a website, similar to Uptrends or Site24x7. Alert capabilities would be nice, but not needed. The best I've found is GTmetrix, but the frequency of the free plan is at most once per day.

Since a serious attempt at this is relatively expensive (a headless browser must load the target site), I wonder if there's a free service that provides this functionality. Searches on Alternativeto.net have been fruitless - I've looked at all the alternatives to Site24x7.

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    Did you look at Pingometer (pingometer.com)? It has what you're looking for - basic http/https monitoring, RUM monitoring (snippet added to the site which measures performance from users on the site), and synthetic transaction monitoring (e.g. "go to this page, click this, make sure the page says that, etc."). The free plan checks each minute and should be enough for most use cases. – okoboko Jun 30 '15 at 4:43
  • I don't give an answer. It's just an article that I recommend to read. Tools Testing Website Performance by Amit Diwan - sitepoint.com/tools-testing-website-performance. – meisyal Jul 3 '15 at 14:58
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If you want to get the real load time of your website, your have to use a real browser with network condition similar to your visitor to simulate at best their experience.

It's costly, so I think if you want to perform check frequently it will be really hard to find a reliable tool for free.

Some alternative I've not seen in the list you give :

  • Dareboost is quite interesting. It offers PageSpeed-like insights and runs checks once per day. – Dan Dascalescu Jul 1 '15 at 13:38
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You could always perform your own with something like python + scrapy.

Simply set a time stamp, load the page(s), get the finish time, take the delta, move on to another site, (to make sure that you are not getting data from a casche), and repeat as necessary.

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Per @okoboko's suggestion, I looked at Pingometer. It has "Real User Monitoring", which means you install a code snippet in your page(s) that will fetch a tracking script from pingometer. Results look like this:

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Pingometer is a bit odd. It's not a single-page app, and navigating from one page to another displays a loading splash screen. Other reports don't quite coincide with the list of checks; e.g. I see this for browsers:

enter image description here

It's unclear over what time period those results are calculate, and Firefox loading in 33ms is clearly impossible.

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If you want a free version Monitor.US is an absolute top player.

Monitis is a paid service with more features (it has a 15 day free trial). Check this short video to see what Monitis can offer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtXAhTxXNAA

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